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Short on Time? Try This All-in-One Yoga Pose!

Posted By Jill Miller On September 21, 2011 @ 11:20 am In Fitness, Yoga | 22 Comments

All-In-One Yoga Pose: Leg Stretch #3 [1]

I have been teaching yoga [2] for 17 years, and one of the most frequent complaints I hear from students and yogaphobes alike is that they don’t have enough time for practice, so they avoid it altogether.

Avoiding a regular practice of stretching will never get you the healing benefits [3] that come with the work. Even if you only do one pose [4] a day, you will make a huge difference in your body, brain and well-being.

So I am here to entice you to try ONE pose — just this one. You don’t need to memorize a sequence. You won’t even need a lot of space or yoga props [5]. This pose can be done every single day, and it will decompress your back and lengthen your hamstrings, IT band and calves. It also strengthens your abdominals [6] and back while stretching the chest, and, for an added bonus, massages your internal organs!

This too-good-to-be-true pose is my absolute favorite pose [7], and I have yet to meet a student in my Yoga Tune Up® [8] classes, private sessions or workshops who doesn’t let out a deep primal “Ohhggmmmnnuugghaaah!” when they do this pose correctly.

Ladies and gentlemen, behold the wondrous powers of Leg Stretch #3.

How to do this all-in-one yoga pose

To get the maximum benefit [9] out of this pose, attempt to follow the directions precisely. The better your alignment, the better the results! Position yourself on your back, in a corner by two walls. You will need to have a yoga brick [10], or substitute a book or even a water bottle [11].

  • Lay on your right side facing wall No. 1 with your outstretched right arm plus the brick touching wall No. 1 and both feet planted on wall No. 2.
  • Cross the left leg to firmly anchor into wall No. 1, pressing the right arm and brick into wall No. 1 as well.
  • Keep pressing the sole of the right foot against wall No. 2.
  • Rotate the left arm and torso away from wall No. 1 to induce a deep spinal twist.
  • Increase the stretch in the outer left buttocks, hamstrings and IT band by shifting the left sit bone and buttock toward wall No. 2.
  • Increase the stretch through the upper back and chest by firmly pressing your right arm into the brick. Feel the stretch thread through the collar bones as you increase your twist.
  • Occasionally emphasize the twist by compressing the abdominals.
  • Be patient and breathe deeply [12] into the abdomen and lower back.
  • Do not tense the jaw or eyes [13]. Do not be aggressive or put your leg into intolerable pain. Move progressively and with awareness.
  • After 90 seconds to two minutes, switch sides

Historically, being “put in a corner” means “time out.” After practicing this pose once or twice, you will be running to a corner to make your own “time out.” [14]

Empower yourself. Practice your new all-in-one-pose yoga practice and feel the instant transformation.

For another variation of this pose on video, click here [15]. Work out with Jill [16] on our streaming video site, Gaiam TV [17]!

Photo: Karen Kirkland Photography [18]


Article printed from Gaiam Blog: http://blog.gaiam.com

URL to article: http://blog.gaiam.com/short-on-time-try-this-all-in-one-yoga-pose/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://blog.gaiam.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/All-In-One-Yoga-Pose1.jpg

[2] yoga: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/Yoga-Go-to-Guide-Answers-and-Solutions.html

[3] healing benefits: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/Yoga-As-Medicine-An-MD-and-Yogi-on-How-It-Works.html

[4] pose: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/10-Essential-Yoga-Poses-HowTo-Video-with-Rodney-Yee.html

[5] yoga props: http://www.gaiam.com/yoga/3010000,default,sc.html?SID=WG117SPRTAPEMACS&extcmp=life_prod

[6] strengthens your abdominals: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/8-Insider-Tips-for-Tighter-Abs-Get-to-the-Core-of-Great-Results.html

[7] favorite pose: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/What-Does-Your-Favorite-Yoga-Pose-Say-About-You.html

[8] Yoga Tune Up®: http://www.yogatuneup.com/

[9] maximum benefit: http://life.gaiam.com/article/benefits-yoga

[10] yoga brick: http://www.gaiam.com/yoga/blocks-straps/3010100,default,sc.html?SID=WG107SPRTAPEMACS

[11] water bottle: http://www.gaiam.com/fitness/water-bottles/4010600,default,sc.html?SID=WG117SPRTAPEMACS&extcmp=life_prod

[12] breathe deeply: http://life.gaiam.com/gaiam/p/1-Minute-Breathing-Exercise-for-Energy-and-Productivity.html

[13] tense the jaw or eyes: http://blog.gaiam.com/blog/how-do-you-accessorize-your-yoga-poses/

[14] make your own “time out.”: http://life.gaiam.com/article/recharging-ahead-7-ways-take-guilt-free-me-time

[15] here: http://www.yogatuneup.com/blog/2009/10/28/my-favorite-pose-for-lower-back-pain-relief/

[16] Work out with Jill: http://www.gaiamtv.com/tv/yoga-weight-loss-kit?chan=GaiamLife&utm_source=GaiamLife&utm_medium=Web&utm_campaign=10day

[17] Gaiam TV: http://www.gaiamtv.com/?chan=GaiamLife&utm_source=GaiamLife&utm_medium=Web&utm_campaign=10day

[18] Karen Kirkland Photography: http://karenkirkland.blogspot.com/

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