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Lauren MacRitchie and the Warrior 3 Yoga Pose.

3 Quick Yoga Poses to Kickstart Your Day

10/06/2014, 9:15am PDT
By Kelvin Cech

Try yoga instead of coffee tomorrow morning.

 

What wakes you up on monday morning?

People have difficulty adjusting to the start of a new week. Our Monday mornings suffer big time when we let our sleep patterns fall outta whack over the weekend.

Coffee helps wake up your mind (somewhat), but what about your body? Introducing a few simple yoga poses to your Monday morning routine can have big benefits on your outlook for the rest of the week.

In fact, yoga could eventually replace your desperate need for a grande espresso just to make it to 10am.

Here are three yoga poses you can do at home each morning.

1. High Lunge

The High Lunge will wake you up by fully engaging your entire body, elongate your spine and open up your breathing.

How: from the Downward Dog position, inhale and reach one foot a few inches into the air into the 3 legged dog position. Exhaling, reach your foot forward between your hands into a lunge position and then inhale, lift your hands off the ground and lift your torso into an upward position. Open your chest and push the shoulders back and away from the ears.

Duration: 1 minute on each side

Benefit: The High Lunge will strengthen your groin and stretch out your hip flexors, firing up your body from the centre out for the entire day. 

2. Pigeon

The Pigeon will wake up your lower body, especially the all-important hip flexors and groin. 

How: Again from Downward Dog, inhale and lift your right leg into the 3 legged dog. Then exhale and move your right leg, heel first, underneath and in front of your hips so your knee and shin drop down on the ground next to your hands. Your left leg is passive with your left knee and the top of your left foot under no tension on the ground. You can either stay upright on your hands, or if you’re comfortable, you can come down onto your forearms. Just be mindful not to overdo it as it’s easy to over-stretch the hip flexors. 

Duration: 1 minute on each side

Benefit: The Pigeon is great for the hip flexors on one side while the other side is stretching the glutes and hamstring. This targets different places in different people depending on their own personal flexibility.

3. Warrior 3

The Warrior is a powerful pose that will complete your morning routine and maximize your balance and coordination for the day. 

How: in a standing position firmly planted on the ground, hinge forward with your torso while at the same time lifting one leg behind you. Find a point of focus and extend your leg back and reach your arms in front of you. Keep your core stabilized and steady and allow your standing leg to bend slightly.

Duration: 30 seconds on each side

Benefit: The Warrior pose not only strengthens muscles in your back, stomach, shoulders and hips, it’s a challenging pose because of the necessary aspects of balance and strength. 

Starting Your Day With a Routine

Following a simple morning yoga routine that works for you has the same effect as breakfast: your body is kickstarted and your mind is cleared, preparing you for the day. As you can see, it only takes a few minutes.

So, how do you wake yourself up in the morning? 

photo credit: a4gpa via photopin cc

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