Relieving some of this daily stress doesn’t require a lot of time or money. Creating space in our day to slow down, move our bodies and breathe is one of the best ways to practice self-care and limit the effects of daily stress.
But how do you relax your mind and body? The answer is yoga. Practicing a few yoga poses for five to 10 minutes each day is the first step toward reducing stress.
These six yoga poses are some of the more recognizable and relaxing postures in the practice. They are accessible to anyone, easy to perform and require little effort. As you enter each pose, allow your body to relax and settle in as you breathe in and out through your nose. This is your time, so find a quiet spot, put on some relaxing music and turn down the lights.
Child's Pose1 of 8
Sit on your shins with your big toes touching and your knee hip-distance apart. Walk your hands out in front until your torso is inline with your thighs. Relax your shoulders and let your hips drop toward your heels. Rest your forehead on the floor or a block.
Sit in this pose for up to two minutes as you breathe slowly through your nose.
Extended Puppy Pose2 of 8
From your hands and knees, as you keep your hips stacked over your knees, walk your hands out in front. Keeping your palms flat and forearms lifted off the floor, sink your chest down and arch your back.
Breathe through your nose for 45 seconds as you gently hold this pose.
Happy Baby3 of 8
Lie on your back. Grab the outer edges of the feet. Place your elbows inside of your knees as you face your feet toward the ceiling. Pull down on your feet and flatten your lower back.
Hold this pose for 30 seconds as you breathe through your nose. Rest and then repeat one more time.
Seated Forward Fold4 of 8
Sit with your legs straight out in front. Gently curl your toes toward your shins. Reach forward toward your toes. Relax your spine as you drop your forehead toward your knees.
Hold this pose for one minute as you breathe through your nose.
Crossed Leg Seated Forward Fold5 of 8
Sit and cross one shin in front of the other. Gently fold forward as you round your upper back. Breathe slowly through your nose for one minute as you hold the pose. Then switch the cross of your legs and repeat for another minute.
Legs Up the Wall6 of 8
Set your legs up against the wall. If flexibility allows, bring your hips all the way to the wall. Relax your shoulders and breathe through your nose as you rest at the wall for up to five minutes.
Corpse Pose7 of 8
Of all of the poses on this list, Corpse Pose is the one you will want to spend the most time in. Lie down onto your back and place a pillow or rolled up yoga mat underneath your knees. Bring your arms alongside your waste and turn the palms up. Relax your whole body, close your eyes and slowly breathe through your nose.
Spend at least five to 10 minutes in this posture as you focus your attention on your breath.