Yoga can be as simple as doing a few poses every morning for fifteen minutes. In this article, we will go through yoga poses for beginners that are easy to integrate into your daily routine. The best thing you can do is create a short sequence of poses to practice everyday and learn it by heart. That way, it will be easier to get up in the morning and get started. Knowing what you have to do and being confident are key to making yoga practice a habit.
The sequence is a sun salutation. It includes 3 poses that flow one into another for three rounds. At the end of the third round, a 4th yoga pose is introduced to finish the sequence. If you need help with transitioning into the poses, watch a sun salutation tutorial video for beginners.
1. Mountain Yoga Pose (Tadasana)
Mountain pose is a simple standing pose with the feet together and the body tall and strong, standing vertically upright. It is the starting pose for all other standing postures in yoga and can also be practiced on its own. It is considered to be the most basic posture of all yoga postures. Although it is a relatively simple pose, it can help improve balance and stability as well as build strength.
- Stand and bring the inner edges of your feet together: big toes touching, heels touching.
- Stand up tall and look straight ahead.
- Straighten your legs. Lift your kneecaps upward to firm your thigh muscles.
- Turn your thighs inward. Drop your tailbone toward your heels to lengthen your lower back and lift the front of your pelvis slightly.
- Lift and broaden your chest by drawing your shoulders back and your shoulder blades down. Reach through your fingertips.
- Lift up through the crown of your head. Keep your gaze level and soft.
- To exit the pose: Relax your arms and legs and stand with a neutral spine.
From the standing pose, slowly roll down starting from the waist up towards the floor. Your neck and head are the last things to fall. Once you are close to the floor, you can get ready for the Plank Pose.
2. Plank Yoga Pose (Kumbhakasana)
Plank is a full body strengthener and a great yoga pose to support the spine and improve posture. Plank Pose is well-known for strengthening the core. However, this posture offers far more benefits reaching throughout the entire body. It would be safe to refer the pose as a “full body posture” because of its wide range of health riches. In addition to strengthening the core, Plank also strengthens the back, neck, wrists, hands, arms and it can even help tighten the glutes or buttocks.
- Begin from hands and knees.
- Line up the palms just slightly wider than shoulder distance apart and spread the fingers wide on the mat, the index finger turns to face forward.
- Press down into the hands and step the legs back to straight.
- Firm the body from the legs all the way up the torso, keeping energy right out to the top of the head.
- Avoid sagging in the pelvis and lower back- an anterior pelvic tilt (pelvis tipping forward) or pelvis lifted too high and tucking under into a posterior pelvic tilt.
Hold for three minutes and transition into downward-facing dog.
3. Downward-Facing Dog Yoga Pose ( Adho Mukha Svanasana)
This pose is good for many of the things that plague our society today: fatigue, back pain and stiffness from sitting all day and has become a popular pose in the western world. Downward-Facing Dog energizes and rejuvenates the entire body. It deeply stretches your hamstrings, shoulders, calves, arches, hands, and spine while building strength in your arms, shoulders, and legs.
- Position hands on the floor. Place your knees right beneath your hips with your hands a little ahead of the shoulders. Lay out your palms with your index fingers in parallel or a little turned out and toes turned under.
- Raise your knees up from the ground. At the start, the knees should be slightly bent with the heels raised up from the ground.
- Extend your tailbone far from your pelvis rear and push it gently in the direction of the pubis. Maintaining this resistance, raise your sitting bones up the ceiling, and draw your inner legs from the ankles up towards the groin.
- Lift your upper thighs behind and extend your heels downwards or onto the ground. Next, ensure that your knees are not locked as you straighten them.
- Flex your outer thighs then roll your upper thighs a little inwards. Narrow your pelvic front.
- Stiffen your outer arms and push the core of your index fingers into the ground. Using these two bases, elevate your arms from your wrists to your shoulder tops.
- Stiffen the blades of your shoulders against the region of your back, then expand them and push them in the direction of your tailbone. Your head should be between your upper arms; it should not hang.
Maintain this Downward-Facing Dog pose between one to three minutes and bring yourself back up to Mountain Pose by lifting the hands from the floor and rolling up until your neck is last to lift straight.
Repeat the sequence three times and end it by bending your knees to the ground with an exhale and Child’s Pose for relaxation.
4. Child’s Yoga Pose (Balasana)
The Child’s Pose is a wonderful yoga pose for beginners in that stretches the muscles of the low back, as well as the inner thighs. For those with a tight back and hip muscles, this will, of course, feel like work. But get beyond the tension and Child’s Pose is deeply relaxing. It promotes flexibility, stress relief and helps circulation to the muscles, joints and disks of the back.
- Start on your hands and knees on a mat or blanket. Take a moment to feel the weight on your hands. Are your palms contacting the floor evenly? Take a moment to even out your hands from side to side and from heels to fingers.
- Now settle your hips back onto your heels and rest your forehead on the floor. Stretch your arms out in front of you for a few breaths, lengthening all the way from your pelvic floor to the fingertips like a cat stretching out its paws.
- Take a few breaths with your arms actively extended, and then release your arms to your sides and turn your palms up. Allow your shoulder blades to slide out to the sides.
- Imagine that your back is shaped like a tortoise shell, and draw the breath into your back, expanding it out in all directions. Let your breath massage your back from the inside. On your exhalations, let go of any tension you feel anywhere in your body.
- Take as many breaths here as you like. When you are ready to come out of the pose, place your hands under your shoulders, ground your shins and knees, press with your hands, and slowly roll your spine up lifting your head last, so that you are sitting on your heels. Relax and breathe naturally.