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One of the best ways to relax both your body and mind is by doing yoga. Yoga is growing increasingly more popular as the years go by, and is being picked up by more and more people. But if you’re a beginner to yoga, how exactly should you get started? Here are the top 10 best yoga poses for beginners.
Also known as Utthita Trikonasana, the Triangle pose is a fairly basic pose which tones the legs, stretches the leg muscles, clears mental stress, and increases overall stability. The pose works by spreading your legs apart into a triangle shape. After you’ve done this, bend your body to one side and reach your leading arm down to the ground behind your foot. Point your other hand into the air and hold for a few seconds. Detailed instructions can be found here.
2. Downward Facing Dog
More formally known as Adho Mukha Svana, Downward Facing Dog is a yoga pose designed to build strength while stretching out the entirety of the body. It also works to give you relief from headaches, insomnia, fatigue, and depression. To do the pose, spread out your legs and then lean forward until you’re supporting the front half of your body with your hands. While keeping your arms and legs straight, bend at the waist to make a triangle and hold. For an in-depth explanation, look here.
Formally known as Kumbhakasana, the plank is a yoga pose which can be used to strengthen your core, arms, and spine. In addition to toning up your muscles, it also works to tone up your nervous system, helping you with your concentration. It’s a very basic pose. You simply get down on your hands and feet in a pushup position and hold. Make sure the weight is on your toes and palms to get ultimate results.
4. Mountain Pose
The mountain pose, also known as Tadasana, is one of the most basic yoga poses there is. It helps to improve balance, focus, and posture, and also helps to strengthen the muscles in your legs. To do the pose, stand up straight with your feet touching each other. Your feet should be pointing in so that your big toes are making contact. Once you have done this, slowly raise your heels and let your arms fall to your sides. Hold this pose for a couple of seconds and then slowly return to the starting position.
One of the best ways to start improving your balance is by practicing the tree pose. Also known as Vrksasana, the tree pose gives you strength and balance of body mind and body. It targets the thighs, shoulders, groin, and torso. To do the pose, start by standing up straight and placing your feet together. Then, lift either your left or right leg and place the bottom of your foot flat against the side of the calf on your opposite leg. Bring the hands together in tandem with this motion, and hold while maintaining balance.
6. Bridge Pose
Also known as Setu Bandha Sarvangasana, the bridge pose helps greatly with flexibility. The pose helps to open up the chest while stretching the spine, neck, thighs, and hip flexors. To do the pose, start by laying flat on your back with your arms to your sides. Whilst leaving your arms in place, lift up at your hips, straightening your knees at a 90 degree angle. Hold for a few seconds and then return to the starting position.
7. Child’s Pose
The Child’s Pose, also known as Balasana, is one of the most basic yoga poses there is. Commonly used as a rest pose between more complex and strenuous poses, it helps to stretch out the hips, thighs, and ankles while also giving the brain time to relax. To do the pose, get down on your knees. After you’ve done this, lower your forehead to the ground. You can either place your hands in front of you, or leave them back by your feet.
8. Warrior I
The first of two Warrior poses, Warrior I, also known as Virabhadrasana I, helps to stretch out the entire front half of the body while also strengthening the thighs, ankles, and back. Good for coordination and balance, it’s fairly simple to perform. Start by placing your left or right leg far in front of your body. Then, place your opposite leg far behind your body. Once you’ve done this, reach your arms to the sky, stretching at your hips, knees, and rib cage.
9. Warrior II
The Warrior II pose, also known as Virabhadrasana II, works in the same way as Warrior I, but requires stretching your arms horizontally instead of vertically. This pose helps to stretch the legs, groin, and chest, while also helping to strengthen the buttocks, thighs, and core. It also contributes to improved concentration and balance.
10. Seated Twist
A very basic yoga move, the seated twist, also known as Sukhasana, involves sitting on the mat indian style and twisting your body to one direction or the other. The pose helps to stretch out the hips, ankles, abdominal muscles, and knees while also strengthening the core. In addition to its physical benefits, the pose has also been shown to reduce stress and anxiety.
Image Courtesy of Flickr User Global Panorama