YOGA FOR PHYSICAL HEALTH

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Yoga Poses for Runners: Downward Facing Dog

To practice Adho Mukha Svanasana, come to Mountain Pose at the front of your Yoga mat. With an inhale, raise your arms overhead. With your next exhale, bring your hands down the front of your body in Prayer Position all the way to your Yoga mat. Place your hands next to your feet and with your next inhale look slightly up, and then with an exhale, jump or walk your feet behind you so that your body creates an inverted V.

Yoga Poses for Tennis Players: Seated Spinal Twist

The work in this Yoga pose is to use the leverage of your arms and the movement of your breath to subtly wind and unwind the asana as you inhale and exhale. With each inhale; twist a little deeper by leveraging your right elbow against your left knee. With each exhale; allow the pose to release just an inch or two.

Kapalabhati: Skull Shining Breath for Creativity

Including pranayama exercises into your Yoga practice will clear your mind of unnecessary thoughts and revitalize your entire body with an immediate flow of fresh oxygen and nutrients. Skull Shining Breath, also known as Kapalabhati Pranayama, is one of the most effective pranayama techniques for igniting the creative spark and clearing out all of your “mental cobwebs.”

Increasing Agni in your Yoga Class: Bhastrika Pranayama

If a Yoga student has high blood pressure or a heart condition, Bhastrika Pranayama is not recommended. A daily practice of Bhastrika Pranayama, for five to ten minutes prior to asana practice or meditation, will help to calm and soothe the mind as it invigorates the body.

Teaching Body Awareness in Yoga Classes

As students gain experience with yoga, they can start becoming more mindful of their bodies. In turn, they become more comfortable in their own skin. By pointing this out on a regular basis, teachers can help students embrace and appreciate this excellent development. For instance, as students assume different poses, teachers can remind them to notice how various parts of their body are feeling and responding.