This recovery sequence is designed to promote strength, mobility and flexibility. Some of these movement patterns may be challenging – but give it a try a few times and you will see improvements quickly.
In this demonstration, all movements begin from the Downward Facing Dog position, or standing. Both are fundamental poses in Yoga and allow for smoother transitions. Aim to hold each pose for 20 seconds (around 5 deep breaths – don’t hold your breath). Perform the movements as a circuit repeating 5 times. You will feel energised and calmer after this sequence.
A1: Down Dog to Side Plank
From Down Dog pull your bodyweight forward until your armpits are stacked over your wrists. Bring feet together, press your right hand down firmly and you draw your right armpit towards your right hip to stabilise your shoulder. Raise your left arm up, draw your belly in energetically and if balance permits look up. Hold for 5 breaths and go back to Down Dog, and repeat on the left hand, then back to Down Dog for the next pose.
A2: Down Dog to 3 legged Dog to Fallen Triangle
Start in Down Dog pressing the floor away firmly draw in your bottom ribs and lift your right leg as high as it will go. Move your right knee towards your left elbow, looking towards to your right hand. Move the right foot as close to your right hand as you can placing the outer edge of the foot on the floor. The left foot flattens, you press down with feet and hand and reach your left arm up looking up if balance permits. Hold for 5 breaths then move back to Down Dog repeating with the left leg.
A3: Down Dog to High Plank
From Down Dog pressing the floor away firmly, bottom ribs drawn in, pull your body forward so your wrists are above your armpits. Draw the belly in and hug your thigh muscles up. To increase the intensity try pulling your hands towards your feet and feet towards hands. To decrease the intensity lower your knees, but don’t let your bottom stick up. Aim for a long line from crown of head to heels.
A4: Down Dog to Low Lunge
From Down Dog draw your right leg into your chest raising the hips slightly. You will need to really use your core muscles to get the knee up and forwards so you can land your right foot by your right thumb. Look forward lifting the chest and opening the collarbones, sinking your hips down but keeping your left leg activated and straight. Hold for 5 breaths then step back to down dog repeating on the left leg.
A5: Triangle Pose
This pose commences from a standing position. From Down Dog try jumping your feet to your hands then standing up. Getting your feet in the right place is important – take your arms out wide and your heels should be below your wrists. Turn your right foot to the right and your left heel out slightly. Keeping your spine long reach to the right as far as you can, then lower right hand towards right shin and lift your left arm up. Important to keep the belly activated and pulled in and the thigh muscles drawing up to keep the legs working.