Rest and Restore: A Guide For Creating a Morning and Evening Yoga Ritual
Rest and Restore: A Guide For Creating a Morning and Evening Yoga RitualYoga is becoming a popular activity to help people improve their fitness, practice mindfulness, and reduce stress. It turns out that a yoga practice can also help you be more rested! We reached out to Jesi Verchota, the founder of Altruistic Yoga, for this guest post that will help you create a simple morning and evening routine to feel rested and refreshed.
Most of us lead lives working busy days and then collapse in exhaustion –or- stay up late overstimulating ourselves with television, internet, or using our mobile devices. Yoga encourages balance between pure exhaustion and overstimulated days. Taking time out to rest and restore is imperative to living well, and can lead to improved attitudes and increased productivity. The more often you practice, the more you will feel the effects and notice any change. Below are some yoga poses you can do to create a ritual and stick with it.
Restore: Poses for waking up in the morning
This pose stretches the hips and legs as you take time to wake up slow.
- Kneel on the bed and bring big toes to touch
- Place pillow down on bed vertically and separate knees to the outside of the pillow
- Lay your torso down across the pillow and stretch your arms out long overhead
- Inhale through the nose, exhale through the mouth
This flow of movements warms up the spine as well as massages and stimulates organs.
- Begin in Tabletop Pose
- INHALE take your gaze forward, Drop your heart forward, send your tailbone to the sky
- EXHALE round your back, tuck your chin in towards your sternum, reach your tailbone towards the earth
- Allow your breath to guide the movement; move from extension to flexion for several cycles
Seated Side Stretch
This pose opens the hips and the upper body.
- Sit on pillow or bolster, arms relaxed by your side
- Lift right arm overhead, walk left arm out to side reaching elbow down towards earth
- Lean your torso over to the left
- Revolve your heart open towards the sky, gaze to your tight inner elbow
- Repeat on the opposite side
Rest: Poses for relaxation and going to bed
Being deprived of a good night’s sleep can cause us to become unbalanced and more stressed. Try a few restorative yoga poses each night to relax the mind and body.
Supported Bound- Angle Pose
This pose brings circulation to hips and lower back.
- Lie down on your back with a pillow under your neck and head
- Place the soles of your feet together and allow your knees to fall to the sides
- Position a pillow under each knee, make sure knees are equal heights
- Take full, slow, deep inhalations, followed by slow, gentle exhalations for several cycles
Elevated Legs-Up-the-Wall Pose
This pose quiets the mind and refreshes the heart and lungs.
- Place 1-2 pillows up against the wall or headboard
- Sit on one end of the pillow, with long side of the pillow behind you and shoulder on the wall
- Roll onto your back and then windmill the legs up the wall, bringing your sit bones up as close to the wall as possible
Happy Baby Pose
This pose gently stretches inner legs and spine as well as calms the the brain and relieve stress and fatigue.
- Lie on back, bend knees into chest
- Grip the outside of your feet or your ankles and then bring your knees to the outside of your torso
- Shins are perpendicular to the earth, heals reach up towards the sky
Everyone in the family needs #SafeHealthySleep routines, not just children. There is no better way to create a habit than starting Rest & Restore Yoga.
Jesi Verchota, RYT200 is the founder of Altruistic Yoga, and is devoted to helping her students love their life, love their practice, and ignite their inner smile. Jesi teaches Restorative Yoga, Recover Yoga, Deep Stretch, Pre/Post-Natal Yoga and Classical Mat Pilates. She completed her Yoga Certification with over 800 hours of training and application. When Jesi is not teaching, you can find her spending time in nature with her husband, Dr. Ryan Verchota and son Leo.