YOGA POSES FOR RELAXATION

Head roll

While you are still with the relaxed feeling, roll your head slowly from side to side practising pendulum breathing as you do so.

3. Lie relaxed

a. . Take up your original lying on back position. If you are tense you will find your elbows are close in by your sides. (Instinctively you are trying to keep small and provide your enemy with a minimal target.) Now move your elbows away from your body, placing your hands just below your ribcage. Practise 10 pendulum breaths while appreciating how much more relaxed your arms, hands and fingers now feel. The more you ease your elbows comfortably away from the body the more relaxed you feel.

b. If when you first take up this elbows-out hands-on-body position you find yourself clasping or feeling your body, then remove your hands from their clasping position and open and shut them five to 10 times quite quickly. Then let your hands fall back on to the abdomen. They will feel much more at rest and easy.

Having mastered these three points, repeat as many times as you can on your back and on your side. You may have some trouble doing exercise (1) on your side. In principle the feeling is the same but the muscles of the upper arm and shoulder, at first on one side and then on the other, provide the ‘motive power’. When you try to adapt exercise (3) to lying on your side, gravity is allowed to let the free arm tumble forward across the chest to the floor or bed. The fingers are instinctively relaxed in this manoeuvre.

4. Lower and upper arm relaxation

Repeat your arm muscle relaxation programme from Day Four.

1. Back-relaxation (pelvic tilt)

a. To start with, practise relaxation of the back muscles, lying on your back on the floor and trying to make as much contact with the floor as you can.

b. Press down into the area of the pelvis, below and to the right of your tummy button, and as you do so roll slightly to the right with your pelvis. This allows your left thigh to leave the floor slightly. This in turn tilts the pelvis slightly. It is a tension position so only stay there momentarily. Arms should remain relaxed throughout.

c. Then allow yourself to fall back into the total floor contact position. This feels nice and relaxed in comparison. Stay with this relaxed feeling for two pendulum breaths.

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