Magnificent disciplines such as yoga have become popular today and are at disposal for humans in order to let them know themselves better and remain upright and healthy: physically, mentally and spiritually. There is a social label or prejudice that this practice is mainly designed with physical objectives but in fact it considers every exercise and posture as one of the many ways to reach more harmonious levels of consciousness, to live in peace and integral well-being.
Therefore, in Meditative Mind we bring to you the main yoga exercises to be done at home for beginners, explaining their effects not only for the physical body, but also their relationship with our emotional health.
Asana against back pain: Cat-cow movement
This exercise called “cat-cow” is done by leaning on the floor with both knees and hands open, separated by the width of the hips and shoulders respectively. Hands should be wide open, with fingers separated to ease balance. In that position, you should practically form a square. From there, proceed to the following:
- Inhale and bend your back down, keeping your shoulders and hips in place. The head is tilted a little backwards as a result of the movement of the back.
- Exhale by contracting the navel to the fullest and stoop inward. Your head follows the movement, in such a way that you look towards your belly.
- The cycle continues for about 26 repetitions, inhaling and exhaling through the nose.
This is one of the main yoga exercises that involves few risks and is quite easy for beginners. It’s very effective to relieve back pain and, in addition, to discharge the stress of the day, since our brain and nervous system achieve a better oxygeneration and reception of nutrients, by the flux of the encephalon-spinal fluid, relaxing the muscular blocks (tensions) that interrupt its flow. Once you achieve confidence with the movement, you can increase the speed of the movement.
You should be cautious or consult with your trusted professional if you had recent accidents or present serious problems in the cervical, as well as patients recently operated on the lumbar back. This pose is forbidden for pregnant women.
Setu bandha Sarvangasana: Bridge pose for abdomen, legs and glutes
Start by lying on your back, legs as wide as your hips and bringing your heels as close as possible to your buttocks, so that you can grab them or at least touch them. From this position:
- Inhale and raise your torso until a straight line forms from the knees to the neck.
- Hold a second up, contracting gluteus and abdomen.
- Exhale while lowering to the initial posture while maintaining control of the movement, that is, without falling down in one fell swoop.
- Repeat 26 times.
Keep your hands firmly on the floor or around your heels. It is crucial to respect the indication of the alignment of the knees up to the neck. To elevate the pelvis too much is useless and to raise it incomplete can produce discomfort, because it is a sign that you are not doing the exercise correctly, as you aren’t contracting the indicated muscles.
This exercise works mainly for the following purposes:
- Adjusts and tones glutes, abdomen and lower back,
- Relieves lumbar tensions and reduces the pain of sciatica.
- Combats circulation problems and varicose veins in the legs without the difficulty of other inverted postures.
- Reduces stress.
- Improves intestinal health if you contract the abdomen when you reach the top and while you descend.
- On an emotional level: relieves accumulated fears and reduce anxiety about sex.
Relaxing yoga posture after eating
This is a very simple resource that you can use after at least 5 minutes after all your meals. Just lie on your back and hug your knees to your chest. In this position, close your eyes and concentrate on breathing deeply and doing a moderate pressure with your legs on your abdomen to make the hug stronger.
This position is excellent to calm an agitated heart, face moments of anxiety, as a comfortable help to sleep and is indicated by physiotherapists against lumbar stenosis, because if you emphasize the strength of the hug, you will allow the compressions in that area of the back to relax even better.
The estimated basic time is 3 to 5 minutes, although it can be so relaxing that it will surely make you to stay much longer.
Bhujangh asana or Cobra pose: opens your heart and throat and balance your 2nd Chakra
Lying on your stomach with legs stretched; raise your chest up by pushing with both hands opened under your shoulders. Your neck zone has to stay relaxed; otherwise the tension on that zone will be counterproductive and even harmful.
The main purpose of the push from the hands isn’t to raise the shoulders but to open your chest. In that posture, always keep your gluteus contracted to maintain your pelvis on the ground and legs stretched up to the toes. Otherwise, you’ll face more risks of having tension around the neck.
In that posture, breathe deeply for 2-3 minutes.
Benefits of cobra pose:
- It opens your heart and increases your lung capacity
- Adjustment of your posture.
- Improves communication.
- Stretches and strengthens your abs.
- Relaxes your back.
- Strengthens your glutes and legs.
Meditate to increase and assimilate their benefits
This may not be an asana but should be included in every single one of them and after finishing your practice. Let’s remember that these postures work also on your consciousness, thus it’s recommended to make a short pause to feel the effect of each pose/movement once you end it, and also to give you 3 or five minutes before closing your routine to let your physical and astral body assimilate the effects of your practice, and extend that peace and Meditative Mind for the rest of the day.