Editor’s Note: Can you believe summertime is upon us? Who here is feeling a little bit less than beach ready? I know I am! Bethany Diddle, owner of Shaka Yoga in Lawrenceville, NJ was kind enough to chose a handful of her favourite poses to help you get yoga ready. Check them out below, and make sure to watch the video to see the flow in action.
Downward Facing Dog
Start on your hands and knees and sway from side to side. As you do this, relax a lot so you feel easy breezy in your body. Once stress and tension has evaporated, tuck your toes under and lift hips high to the sky. Ah, Downward Facing dog, it just feels so good, right?! With the hands flat into the mat, the balls of the feet rooted and the hips and sit bones lifting high to sky, this is the perfect pose to strengthen and tone the entire body! Stay for a few deep inhales and exhales and chill-out as waves of relaxation and release wash over you.
High Plank Pose
From Downward Facing dog, lift heels up and down a few times to energize the legs. On the last lift, draw your energy into the pelvis, then into the belly, and then let it float the heart forward in between your hands for High Plank Pose. “Be and breathe” fully in this asana that builds heat and strength everywhere, especially the core! Be mindful of length, engagement, and alignment. Can you stay 2 minutes? Add in a side plank on each side? Give it a shot. Hey why not, it’s swimsuit season!
High Crescent Lunge
After generating lots of heat in high plank pose, hoist your hips up to return to Down Dog. Extend your right leg high to the sky and then bring the knee in and up into the chest, softly place your foot between your hands and float up to High Crescent Lunge. This is a terrific pose for strengthening the legs, glutes, and even the upper body and arms. Gaze forward and envision a beautiful sun-drenched horizon in front of you!
Yummy Half Moon Pose. I mean, does it get any better? From High Crescent Lunge, lower your hands to frame your front foot. Scoot your right hand about 6-8 inches from right pinky toe. Now for a simple weight shift – lean, lift, and enjoy!
From Half Moon Pose, bend your right knee, lower left leg and step back into a powerful Warrior 2. I like to relax my arms a little bit here as a reminder to keep it light and let go of tension! Strong legs, strong body, strong mind, warrior spirit! L-O-V-E. Tip back to Peaceful Warrior and then cartwheel hands through a vinyasa and recoup for a bit in down dog. When ready, repeat on other side starting at High Crescent Lunge.
Finished on the left side? Drop your knees and sink into Child’s Pose to stretch out the legs and open your back. Breathe consciously and take a moment to turn your perspective inward. As mentioned, many yoga poses will help your body to be beach ready, but how you feel inside is what’s most important! Take some time to connect to your inner energy and enjoy this space as you get nourished. After a few minutes, walk your hands in, sit up and smile.
NOW, you’re totally beach ready!
To see this flow in action, watch the video.