5 Yoga Poses You Should Do Everyday

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Handstands, headstands, arm balances, splits and backbends… what do all these have in common? Well for starters you can usually find them sprinkled throughout the pages of Yoga Journal, on the walls of Lululemon and in every yogi Instagram account you may come across.  They’re bold, they’re fun and, here’s the kicker – they’re usually very advanced. Now don’t get me wrong, I love me some wheel pose and am super guilty of peppering both my blog and my Instagram account with most of the poses mentioned (except for splits. Curse these tight hamstrings!). However, I know that they can sometimes come off more intimidating than inspiring – and that’s why this rendition of my Yoga #TipTuesday is all about bringing it back to basics. 

Think of these 5 poses as the ‘bread and butter’ of yoga practice. They may not be super flashy but they’re incredibly important for building a solid foundation in which you can expand your flexibility, balance and strength. The best part is if you’re struggling to find time for yoga, you can focus solely on these five poses and finish up your stretch sesh in less than 30 minutes! Before you get started, please keep in mind that proper alignment is key. I would recommend looking at Yoga Journal to get more in-depth tips of how to get into each pose. 

Four Limbed Staff Posedailyyoga1

Sanskrit name: Chaturanga Dandasana

My Favorite Benefits: 

  • Strengthens the arms, wrists, shoulders and abs
  • Preps you for all those difficult inversions like pincha 
  • Makes you feel super stabilized, strong and kind of like a superhero

Yogi Tips: This pose is one of my favorites for building up the strength needed for arm balances! Practice coming in and out of this from Plank pose, keeping your elbows stacked directly above your wrists. Most importantly – do not forget to breathe! To measure your improvement, try timing yourself and see how long you can hold this each time you practice.

Standing Forward Foldforwardbend

Sanskrit name: Uttanasana

My Favorite Benefits:

  • Stretches the hips, hamstrings, and calves
  • Helps to keep your spine nice and flexy
  • Acts as a little boost of energy – reduces stress and fatigue
  • Relieves tension you may be carrying in your neck and lower back

Yogi Tips: If you’re like me and have incredibly tight hamstrings, I’d recommend keeping a micro-bend in the knees. Focus on hinging at the hips and slowly bringing the body down. I like to practice half forward fold (with a flat back) and then come down into full forward fold (but as you can see, I have a ways to go).  

Downward Facing Dogdailyyoga2

Sanskrit name: Adho Mukha Shvanasana

My Favorite Benefits: 

  • Another great stress reliever (because we can’t have enough of those)
  • Wakes your body up! 
  • Stretches the shoulders, hamstrings, calves, and hands
  • Strong, sexy legs and arms for the win

Yogi Tips: It’s more important to have a flat back in this pose than to have the heels touch the floor. Practice “walking it out” by bending one knee while straightening the opposite leg and vice versa. Send your bottom high in the air and try to create a straight line from your hips to your hands. Oh! And don’t forget to squeeze, squeeze, squeeze those abs. 

Warrior II Posedailyyoga3

Sanskrit name: Virabhadrasana II 

My Favorite Benefits: 

  • Stretches your hips, groins and shoulders
  • Forces you to open up your chest and really breathe
  • Energizes your body… even when you’re super tired
  • Helps to relieve pesky backaches that you get from hunching over the computer (or your phone)
  • Improves your balance skills

Yogi Tips: Yoga may seriously be the only time you ever use geometry in real life… Keep your back foot at a 45 degree angle and your front leg at a 90 degree angle. Never let that front knee slip past your ankle! 

Pigeon Posedailyyoga4

Sanskrit name: Kapotasana

My Favorite Benefits: 

  • Really opens up your hips
  • Preps your body for more advanced heart openers and splits 
  • Stretches your booty and your groin 
  • Helps to relieve any tension that you hold in your hip flexors

Yogi Tips: For starters, definitely don’t practice this on a rock. Try to keep your hips squared and down – push into your hands and keeping your waist nice and long. Take your time with this one and really feel your body start to slowly open up and relax. 

No matter what level of yoga you’re currently practicing, I hope you find time to incorporate these poses into your practice every day! Thanks so much for reading and check back next Tuesday for more yoga tips. 

With love and light,

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*Please note that I am not a certified yoga instructor. All tips provided are solely gained from my own personal practice. 

3 Comments

    • Melanie

      Thanks so much, Sarah! Flexibility is a constant work in progress but it’s incredibly rewarding when you see even a little bit of improvement. :)

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