Five Easy Yoga Poses for Mindfulness
March 24. 2021
Few exercises challenge you physically while also facilitating mindful meditation that heals your mind and challenges the body. Yoga is a beautiful practice in both these critical areas. While yoga can be quite challenging, Weight Loss Clinic Chicago presents five easy yoga poses for meditation that any beginner can master.
Hero Pose, or Virasana, is a beautiful, soothing pose that is great for beginner Yogis everywhere. Focusing on the legs, calves, and ankles, Hero Pose is excellent for unloading at the end of the day or for meditation at the end of a workout. Used as an alternative to the lotus pose, this pose is ideal for people who have lower leg soreness or anyone on their feet all day. Aligning your spine, hips, and neck, the pose allows for perfect comfort, so your mind is free to focus on the clarity that comes with meditation.
Begin by kneeling on your yoga mat. You can place a rolled towel or yoga block between your legs to give your trunk more support. Place your knees together and lay your hands on the top of your knees, curling around the front of the knees. Apply subtle pressure through your hands and roll your shoulders back to align with your spine as you exhale. With each breath, open your sternum up toward the sky and position your hips above your ankles. Allow your mind to focus on the calming stretch you will feel through your back, thighs, and core.
Child’s Pose, or Balasana, is a go-to pose for beginners to get a great core stretch and still open the mind up to meditation. Focusing on lengthening the spine and stretching the hips and buttocks, Child’s Pose increased blood flow to the brain while allowing the back to rest. This pose facilitates medication breathing as you flow from your weight to your knees to centering your body and taking some of the weight onto your shoulders and arms.
Begin by getting down on all fours on your yoga mat. Keeping your toes and ankles together, rock your hips back until your buttocks are resting on your calves. You want to keep your knees apart as your torso will lay between your thighs as you stretch forward. Now, stretch out your arms towards the end of the mat, keeping your ears tucked below your elbows and your chin aligned with your sternum. There should be a gentle stretch through the small of your back and hips. As you inhale, raise your spine towards the ceiling as you open your lungs up and allow the oxygen to flow to your mind. As you exhale, really lean into the stretch for your back and hips and feel your spine lengthen.
Corpse Pose, or Savasana, is perhaps the most comfortable pose for beginner yogis to master. The real challenge is not letting your meditation lull into a relaxing sleep when you should be focusing on your breathing. Perfect for calming down after a workout, unwinding at the end of the day, or helping you to manage daily stress, the corpse pose is an easy and useful tool to master.
Begin by laying down on your yoga mat. Align your body and try to keep your spine pressed to the mat while positioning your legs hip-length apart. Your ankles, knees, hips, and shoulders should be in alignment while your arms are relaxed and resting beside the body. The hands curled palm-side-up toward the ceiling. As you breathe and focus on entering a meditative state, the body is prone. This pose is excellent for full-body meditation, meaning you can truly focus on quieting your mind while your body is merely resting on your mat.
Cat-Cow Pose, or Chakravakasana, is a personal favorite of mine for meditation, body awareness, and creating a gentle stretch. Focused on the spine’s curvature, this pose utilizes slow movement as you breathe in and out. While excellent for people who have back and hip pain, this easy pose is perfect for living your way into a meditative state.
Begin by kneeling on your hands and knees on your yoga mat. With your palms flat on the mat, imagine the rest of your body as a table, keeping your spine perpendicular to the ground. Focus on keeping your spine straight along your back from your tailbone to the top of your head. Your knees should be hip-length apart, with your hips aligned above the knees. Your shoulders and wrists should also be aligned. As you breathe in, bend your chin down toward your chest, allowing your spine to curl and bow up toward the ceiling. Hold for a five-second count, and then exhale, allowing your back to become concave and bend towards the mat, pointing your chin toward the ceiling. Continue flowing from the cat-cow position while focusing on your breathing.
Mountain Pose, or Tadasana, is the only pose on this list where you are standing to meditate. Like the corpse pose in concept, the body should be aligned from your heels up through your head. However, if you have trouble staying awake in a corpse pose, the mountain pose is a great alternative. This pose is useful for after workout mediations and for waking up in the morning.
Begin by standing on your mat. Place your feet hip-length apart and align your ankles, knees, hips, and shoulders. Keep your spine straight up through the crown of your head and focus on your breath, inhaling to expand your ribcage out and up toward the sky. Relax your shoulders and allow your palms to be facing outwards, with your smallest finger against the side of your leg. As you breathe to find your meditative state, focus on the rise and fall of your shoulders.
Add All Five to Your Daily Workout
While you might not be ready for Crow Pose, these five easy yoga poses for meditation are lovely tools to master as you begin your yoga journey. Practice them all until you find the one that helps facilitate your meditative state or flow through all five for a great gentle stretch post-workout.
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