5 Yoga Poses to Start Your Day

Starting your day off with intention and mindfulness is always the best way to set yourself up for success.  Imagine if every one could wake up to pranayama, a 60 minute Yoga flow, meditation and a green juice before heading out the door. Maybe that’s how all the worlds problems would be solved? Unfortunately, most of us don’t have that kind of time and struggle to even find time for our mat in the morning despite our need for it. Yes, NEED. Which is why I’ve decided to share with you the 5 yoga poses I do almost every morning to help stretch and wake up my body and prepare my mind for the day. 

I usually wake up in the morning with a lot back and shoulder pain and naturally want to work out those kinks and tightness, which is where is sequence originates.  It can easily be used as a warmth for a morning flow or keep it short hand sweet if you’re on the move. However, disclaimer; these poses are know to case a crave for more yoga. 

1. Cat/Cow 

This is almost always the first pose I find myself in after childs pose. It may technically be two poses by in my mind cat always accompanies cow and cow always accompanied cat.  

Start in tabletop with hips over knees and shoulders over wrists. Inhale while you drop the belly and lift the chest and the tailbone toward the sky. Pull the shoulds back to make sure to lengthen through the abdominal muscles and make sure not to crunch through the lower spine. Use the exhales to draw the navel to the spine and chin to the chest, rounding through the spine like an angry cat.  

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2. Thread the Needle  

Start in table top, just like you would cat/cows. Ground down through the left hand and inhale your right arm up toward the sky, pull your right shoulder back. Exhale while you dive your right hand under your left arm pit and bring your right cheek/chin to the mat. Press your left hand into the mad to help open the shoulders and chest. Stay here for at least 5 deep breath beast before repeating on the other side. 

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3. Seated Twist

Sit down with both seat bones grounded into the mat and a straight spine. Ground the right foot down into the mat in the left side of the food and bend at the left knee bringing the heel toward the hip. Inhale and reach your arms up to prepare, exhale and twist to the right bringing the right hand behind you as a kick stand and left elbow to right knee, you can use this as leverage to twist deeper.  Use you inhales to grow taller, reaching through the crown the head and heal to twist through the spine.

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4. Downward Dog

Yupp, good ol down dog.  Start in table top with fingers and palms spread wide,  firmly press down through the thumb and index finger. Exhale and send your  hips toward the sky and heels toward the mat, lengthen long thought the spine.  Externally rotate the shoulders and keep your arms firm pressing your body away from the floor. Release the head and the neck and keep the tailbone shifted toward the sky. Breathe here. 

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5. Forward Fold

Starting in Tadasana, or standing, hinge at the hips and fold forward. Make sure that when you fold, you are folding from your hips with a flat back, not from your waist. Keep the upper body as long as possible letting the crown of the head aim toward the toes. If you're tight then take a bend in the knees and just hang heavy, maybe even shift from right to left. 

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Hopefully these poses help fill your morning with love and light like they do mine and you find the perfect start to your day. xoxo, Dare.