Yoga brings together physical and mental disciplines to achieve a peaceful body and mind and helps to control stress and anxiety. It also helps in improving flexibility, muscle strength, toning the body and improving respiration, energy and vitality. Practicing yoga may sound like just stretching, but it can do a lot more for your body than the way you feel, look, and move.
Bollywood actress and Reebok ambassador Malaika Arora, who has been practicing yoga for a long time, shares some basic yoga asanas. You can practice these at home and start your day with positivity and stay motivated. Each pose can be done for 3 to 5 long breaths. You can practice these twice a week and gradually make it a part of your daily routine.
She says: “I am mindful of the fact that I feel centered within myself. There may be a storm, but there is a calmness within. I am grateful for the calmness I have experienced through my practice of yoga and I note that my life has changed positively because of this.”
A few things to note before starting your journey:
* Pay attention to the breath from the very beginning.
*Do what you can easily do. There is no competition. You are expected to proceed at your own pace. Listen to your body and don’t push yourself.
* Don’t get discouraged by lack of flexibility or strength initially, it improves with time. Be patient and give your body time to respond.
* Understand that every body is unique. Everyone has different levels of strength, stamina and flexibility. Your lifestyle and goals may also vary. Find a style of yoga that suits your needs.
* The best time to practice yoga is early in the morning and on an empty stomach. So, start your day with yoga
1. Tadasana (mountain pose)
This mudra teaches one to stand like a mountain with majestic stillness. It involves a large group of muscles and improves focus and concentration.
* Stand with your ankles slightly apart and let your arms hang apart from the torso.
* Gently lift and spread your toes and the ball of your feet, then gently lay them on the floor.
* Balance your body weight on your feet. Lift your ankles and strengthen your thigh muscles by rotating them inward.
* Lengthen your torso as you inhale and drop your shoulder blades away from your head as you exhale.
* Widen your collarbone and lengthen your neck. Your ears, shoulders, hips and ankles should all be in line.
* You can initially check your alignment by standing with the wall. You can also raise your hands and spread them. breathe easy.
2. Vrikshasana (Tree Pose)
This pose gives you a sense of grounding. It improves your balance and strengthens your legs and back.
*Place your right foot on your left thigh. The sole of the foot should be flat and held firmly. Keep your left leg straight and find your balance.
* While inhaling, raise the hands above the head and join the palms together. Make sure your spine is straight and take a few deep breaths.
*Exhale slowly, bring your hands down and release your right leg. In standing position, repeat the same with the other leg.
3. Adho Mukho Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
This pose stretches the hamstrings, chest and lengthens the spine, providing additional blood flow to the head. It will make you feel energetic.
* Sit on the ankles, stretch the hands forward on the mat and lower the head.
* Build a table, like pushing your hands, strengthen your legs and slowly raise your hips.
* Press your heels down, let your head go freely by the hand and tighten your waist.
4. Trikonasana (Triangle Pose)
It stretches the legs and torso, moves the hips and promotes deep breathing, giving the person a lively effect.
* Stand with your feet wide apart. Keeping the leg close to the torso, extend your right leg out (90 degrees).
* Keep your feet close to the ground and balance your weight equally on both the feet. Inhale and while exhaling bend your right hand and touch it to the ground while your left hand will go up.
* Keep the waist straight. Make sure your body is bent to the side and not forward or backward. Stretch as far as you can while taking long, deep breaths.
* Repeat on the other side.
5. Kursiasana (Chair Pose)
Extremely powerful pose, it strengthens the muscles of the legs and arms. It builds your willpower and has an invigorating effect on body and mind.
* Stand straight with your feet slightly apart.
* Extend your arms but do not bend your elbows. Inhale and bend your knees, pushing your pelvis down as if you were sitting in a chair.
* Keep your hands parallel to the ground and back straight. Take deep breaths. Bend slowly but make sure your knees don’t go past your toes.