We warmed up with stretches, neck warm ups and standing poses Trikonasana and the dancing Warrior I (see Jan blog). These heart openers stimulate blood flow and the immune system and therefore practicing these three poses once a day can help prevent colds and flu.
If you are a beginner each of these poses can be lightened. After preparing for the cobra by lifting, lengthening and releasing each leg 3 times, place finger-tips in line with the eyes rather than level with the shoulders. This gives a more gradual curve in the spine. Always remember your pelvic tilt and take long breaths in the pose.
Take nice long breaths visualise the energy travelling from your feet, up along your legs and up through your spine to your heart centre.
Draw back into Virasana Forward Stretch or child pose to release tension in your lower back.
The bridge can be lightened by lifting the hips to create a line from the shoulders, hips and to the knees. Start with the back of your neck long and feet close to your hips. Work your gentle pelvic tilt as you keep the hips lifted so keeping tension out of your lower back. As we’ve been thinking about protecting knees work to keep the knees facing up and not falling in to each other or out.
Take nice long breaths visualise the energy travelling over the front of your body all the way to your knees and down to your feet.
After releasing from the bridge bring your knees to your chest and hug them to you.
In the fish pose the chest lifts and there is no tension in the back of the neck.
Bend your knees, place your hands palms down under your buttocks, elbows tucked in. Don’t think about this next movement too much. Think light thoughts and lift your chest, arching the upper back and rest on your forearms.
Then energize your heart centre with nice long breaths.
Afterwards bring your knees to your chest or the Garland adaptation we did in class to lengthen the spine.