Stoke Your Inner Fire
As we see the turn of the weather in Brisbane, finally, we welcome cooler nights, and fresh, crisp breezes. Yoga offers a way to warm you from the inside that will keep you feeling physically warm, but also connected to what drives and inspires you, keeping your both aspects of your inner fire ignited through the upcoming cooler months.
Just like you tend to look for cooler foods like salads and crisp green veggies in summer and stews and curries in winter, you can modify your yoga practice to keep your body humming along during every season. Some yoga poses release heat, and others generate heat. Here are some poses to help you warm up and stay warm:
1. Standing Poses: Standing poses such as Utkatasana (Chair Pose), Virabhadrassana 1, 2 and 3 (The
Warrior Poses), and Parsvakonasana (Side Angle Pose) use the largest muscles in the body, stoking your internal fire and warming you up. They’ll get your heart pumping too and are a great prep for the rest of your practice.
2. Sun Salutations: Surya Namaskar is a heating flow and a great way to generate heat if you’re short on time.
3. Backbends: Backbends are warming poses and come in a variety of shapes for all levels of practice. Try Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose) early in your practice, and work up to more challenging backbends like Urdvha Danurasana (Wheel Pose) as it becomes available to your body.
3. Hand Balances: These fiery poses get you super toasty quickly. Play with kicking up to Adho Mukha Vrksasana (Handstand) at the wall for a full minute or two, and whether you get your feet up over your head or not you’re guaranteed to feel the heat! Other hand balances like Bakasana (Crow Pose) also tap into your core power and heat you up. Many of the hand balancing poses require you to open your hips first, so be sure to remember this important step.
Keeping your practice up during the cold winter months helps to keep you feeling energetic and fluid in your joints at a time of year when the weather can make you feel stiff and lethargic. Use your practice to boost circulation, increase energy and keep you motivated and inspired as we move through our coldest months.
© Julie Smerdon 2021
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