Seattle Yoga Photographer

Lara Ederer Yoga | Seattle Yoga Photographer

What could be better than wandering around the Seattle Center after dark with an awesome yoga instructor and good friend?  To be honest, not much!

Lara Ederer and I took full advantage of the beautiful colors and lights that come out after sunset in one of Seattle’s most popular landmarks.

You can check out the photos from that evening here, and if you’re interested in getting out at night for some amazing asana shots, get in touch with me!

 

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Sold Out | Veterans Yoga Project Fundraiser

Have you been thinking about getting professional photos done for your yoga teaching business?  Maybe you have older images that don’t accurately represent what you teach today or you haven’t had the budget in the past to have photos taken.  Perhaps you just need a few shots to promote an upcoming workshop or a fresh headshot.  If any of these are the case then you’re in luck!

I’ll be offering 2-3 hours of my time on June 25th for mini sessions in Seattle.  The best part? The super discounted price for the photos will go directly to Veterans Yoga Project in the greater Seattle area.

The NW Veterans Yoga Project crew has worked extremely hard to create 8 different class offerings to veterans throughout the PNW.  This has been a huge effort here in the Seattle area thanks to several hard working volunteers!  However, the classes are missing some essential items to complete their yoga classes: props.  This money will help them buy blocks, straps, mats and bolsters!  Items that are so important to beginners and practitioners with injuries.

So you’ll end up with some fresh new photos, and you’ll be contributing to a fantastic cause.  All the details you need are below!

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Who: Yoga teachers and practitioners in Seattle

What: 30 minute mini sessions for headshots and asana photos, 8 high resolution, digitally retouched photos for just a $75 donation to Veterans Yoga Project

Where: Eka Yoga Seattle (Super special thank you to Angela at Eka who is graciously donating her BEAUTIFUL space for the afternoon!)

When: June 25th, 12:00-3:00 PM

The regular rate for a mini session with me is $225, and a full session is $395.  At this fundraiser rate, the timeslots are going to go extremely quick!  To reserve your time slot contact me directly by email at danielle@sukhadesign.com

If you wish to donate to the NW Veterans Yoga Project team you can use this link to make a donation.  More importantly, if you want to find out more information about how to serve veterans through yoga please visit Veterans Yoga Project.  There aren’t enough nice things that I could possibly say about this organization!  The main focus at Veterans Yoga Project is helping veterans.  The training is thorough and amazing, the instructors are extremely knowledgeable, and community here in Seattle is growing!

All of the photos in this post were taken at Eka Yoga in Seattle!

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

The Mother Hearts Project

This past weekend I was asked to photograph a group of women who have experienced the loss of a baby.  The request was pretty simple, create images of the mother’s with their hands over their hearts in order to symbolize that they’ll always hold their baby in their heart.  Of course, as a group of yoga teachers, we added another layer to this already beautiful idea by adding in yoga postures.

The photos we took that day will be submitted to a larger collection of photos taken by mother’s throughout the world who have dealt with the loss of their baby.  You can find more information on The Mother Hearts Project website.

Thank you so much to the lovely ladies who were willing to pose for the photos and also thank you to Three Trees Yoga for lending us their studio.

 

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Take a Breath

A regular breath practice is one of the most beneficial things you’ll bring into your world (if you haven’t already).  Below you’ll find 5 different breath practices that you can incorporate into your daily life.  Over time you’ll find that intentional breathing has an unlimited number of benefits.  There is a breath practice for almost everything!

Belly Breathing, Diaphragmatic Breathing

This is the easiest and arguably most important breath practice you can work with.

How to do it:

In a comfortable seated position, you may place your hands on your belly or in your lap. Lengthen through the spine to sit nice and tall and begin to take your breath in as deep as you can. If your hands are on your belly you’ll feel the belly rise and fall. You could do this anytime during your day. Start with sitting and intentionally breathing for 5 minutes during your day. Eventually, you’ll reach the point where you’ll feel frustrations begin to work their way into your body and you’ll immediately resolve them by engaging the breath. If you’re not a regular belly breather, you’ll eventually find this simple tool to be such a powerful part of your world.


2 to 1 breathing, Long Exhale

Taking a long exhale in your breath is extremely calming. In this breath practice, you’ll inhale for a select amount of time, and then draw out your exhale for double the amount of time.

How to do it:

Inhale for 3, exhale for 6. Start wherever you can, maybe just 2:4 seconds for inhale and exhale. Over time you’ll begin working your way up to a long exhale of 10 seconds. This breath forces you to focus on your count while also calming you through breathing. A word of caution though, never inhale longer than you exhale. It’s a very unpleasant experience!

 

Sitali Breath

Sitali is used whenever you need to cool off! Use it in the summer, during menopause, after a tough workout. In this practice, you’ll roll your tongue like a straw and inhale through your tongue. Close your mouth, exhale through your nose. Repeat this breath, noticing the cooling effect it has when you inhale.

How to do it:

In this practice, you’ll roll your tongue like a straw and inhale through your tongue. Close your mouth, exhale through your nose. Repeat this breath, noticing the cooling effect it has when you inhale.

Box Breathing

I love this breath for focus. It requires you to pay attention to your count. Avoid attempting this practice until AFTER you feel comfortable in diaphragmatic and 2 to 1 breath.

How to do it:

For this breath, you’ll work through a count (start with just 3 or 4) for your inhale, hold your breath, count through the exhale, hold without any breath.  All 4 parts of the breath will follow the same count. Repeat this for as long as you feel comfortable, making sure to stop and return to normal breathing whenever you feel like it’s too much.

Nadi Shodhana | Alternate Nostril Breathing

Alternate nostril breath can lower the heart rate and reduce anxiety.  Focusing on the position and movement of your hand will help you keep track of your breath without letting the mind wander.

How to do it:

Take your hand in a fist and let just your pinky and thumb out of the fist. Sit nice and tall, take a big inhale. Use your pinky to cover your left nostril, exhale. With your left nostril still covered, inhale. Switch your fingers to cover your right nostril, exhale. With your finger still over your right nostril, inhale. Switch to cover your left nostril and repeat the whole breath sequence.

 

Bhramari | Bumble Bee Breathing

MY FAVORITE! I’m so excited to share this breath practice with you! Have you ever had a time where you need to just zone out? You needed to shut the world out for just a few minutes and go inside for a little me time? If yes, this breath practice, as silly as it might seem, is perfect for you!

How to do it:

  1. Take both hands in front of you. Separate your thumbs, index and middle, pinky and ring fingers.*

  1. Bring your hands up to your face with your eyes closed. Gently place your index and middle fingers over your eyelids, not pressing, just resting them over the eyes.
  2. Your thumbs will reach back and cover the cartilage of your ears. Again not pressing just gently resting them over the cartilage enough that you’re covering the opening of the ear.
  3. Place the pinky and ring finger over the top of the lips.
  4. Inhale through the nose
  5. Take a long exhale, again through the nose, and create a MMMMMMM vibration with your mouth closed as you exhale.

*I’ve seen the hand position practiced in a variety of different ways, this is how I was taught and how I’ve done it since then.

To make it a little simpler, you can also practice this breath with just your index finger covering the cartilage of your ears.

 

You can purchase any of the items from this post below.  These aren’t sponsored items, just things I wear on a daily basis.  The Washington OM is my own personal design, I hope you like it!

Washington OM t-Shirt: My OM State

Blue Athletic Leggings: TeMa Athletics TeMa promotes body positivity and encourages women to love their body for what it can do, not just how it looks.

Perfect Circle Bracelet: Combat Flip Flops This Veteran owned company uses a portion of it’s profits to provide education and work to the women and children who have been impacted by war.  They provide jobs to US gold star family members as well as those whose lives have been dramatically changed after combat.

Yoga Blocks

Crow Pose Modifications

Try Crow Pose With These Modifications

Bakasana or Crow Pose as it’s commonly referred to is one of the first true arm balances you might encounter in your asana practice.  This pose can be quite challenging as you first begin attempting to work into it.  There are many things that go into the posture including arm strength, core strength, and proper hand placement.  If you don’t quite feel ready to work into the balance unassisted, try the following modifications to help you master your first arm balance!

If you don’t already have a solid set of yoga blocks for your practice, you can find them for sale on Etsy and Amazon


Use blocks under your feet for liftoff As you squat down and prep yourself for Bakasana, place a block under your feet to give you a little liftoff.  One of the most difficult things to do when you start your arm balancing practice is simply lifting your feet off of the floor.  By giving yourself a small boost you may find it easier to lift your toes up and play with balance.  Lift one foot at a time, until you’re able to pick both feet up.
Yoga Blocks
Yoga Blocks


Place a Block Under Your Head allowing you to feel supported as you lift your feet from the floor.  Having a block will give you the ability to focus more attention on lifting your feet rather than keeping your head off the floor.  It may also help you get over the fear of having your head off of the ground.

Yoga Blocks


Place Your Hands On Blocks This modification will help you create some space.  One of the most difficult parts of this pose is forcing your body into a tight ball before lifting up.  If you struggle to get into a deep squat, this modification gives you the space you might need to be able to lift up the hips. Once your hips are up, your feet will naturally start to lift from the floor.

Yoga Blocks


Bonus! If you’ve already mastered the art of this beginner arm balance, try lifting up with a block between your feet.  This will challenge you to fully engage the core and focus.

Yoga Blocks

 

Blocks are currently available for sale on Etsy and Amazon with more buying options coming soon!

Yoga for core strength

Week 4 | Balance | Yoga For The Core

Reblogged from Seattle Yoga News

Yoga for core strength

Our practice so far has been building us up for this challenge. We’ve engaged in poses to stabilize our core, built our endurance with level 2 core stabilizing poses, added a little heat with a fire sequence, and now we will finish strong with balance! As with any balance pose we engage in, please proceed with caution. Listen to your body and move slowly through this practice. Feel free to also use a prop or wall for support as we engage.

Warrior III (Virabhadrasana III)

Stand tall upright either on or off your mat. Take a few cleansing breaths to center yourself before your practice.
As you inhale, lift your arms above your head and lace all but the index fingers. Draw your forearms just over the ears and relax the shoulders.
As you exhale, step forward with your right leg while lifting the back left leg off the earth. Engage your pelvic muscles as you begin to draw your chest forward. Move forward until your body is parallel to the earth.
Hold Warrior 3 for 5 breaths deep breaths, keeping the body stable and core engaged. Repeat on your other leg.

Yoga for the Core

Crane (Bakasana) to Headstand (Sirsasana)

Note: Feel free to practice this pose in front of a wall for support. As with any transitional balance pose, move slowly and with control. Try practicing both poses individually before attempting the transition.

Come into a deep squat with your feet about hips-width apart
Place your hands flat on the earth about shoulders-width apart with your fingers wide-spread. Ensure your elbows are drawn into your sides (it helps to have your hands turned out slightly on the earth with your index fingers pointing straight ahead).
Place your knees on your forearms and begin to shift your weight onto your arms one leg at a time (try to get your knees high above your arms. The deeper you are able to bed into your hips, the higher you’ll be able to take your knees).
As you move forward, keep your neck lifted and take both toes off the earth into Crane. Hold for 5 breaths.

Yoga for the Core
As we make the transition to our Headstand, move with control and stability. Begin to round the spine and move the crown of the head towards the earth. Land into a tripod handstand with the crown of your head and both hands stabilizing your body.
When you are able to find your balance in tripod headstand, exhale and begin to move your legs up towards the sky, keeping your core engaged and slowly un-rounding your spine.
Hold in your headstand for 5 breaths. *Please Note: These photos do not show a tripod headstand, which is a great option for individuals who are newer to inversions.  To work into a tripod headstand you’ll keep both hands on the mat in front of you with your arms bent.  This will allow for additional support in headstand.*

Yoga for the Core

Headstand/Sirsasana Toe Taps

From your headstand, keep your pelvic muscles engaged as you separate your legs. Hold your headstand with your legs separated.
From your balance keep your core braced as you lower one leg at a time towards the earth to tap (for an additional challenge, see if you can tap your legs to the opposite side of your body).
Tap each toe on the earth 5 times.

Yoga for the Core

Yoga for the Core

Yoga for the Core

Yoga for core strength

Week 3 | Fire | Yoga For The Core

Yoga for Core Strength
Reblogged from Seattle Yoga News

This week is all about building endurance. We’ve set our base last week with core stabilization poses, now we can really work on building onto our poses.

Let’s add some fire to our practice! This week will focus on really strengthening our core through movement. Think of this as a flowing power sequence. Feel free to take a Vinyasa between each of these poses to add some heat to this sequence.

Extended Chair Pose to Airplane Arms
  1. Stand tall with your toes and knees together. Inhale as you raise your arms and as you exhale, bend your knees and sit back into Extended Chair Pose.
  2. Take a breath in your Extended Chair Pose and as you exhale, engage your pelvic muscles as you lower your upper body towards the earth and extend both arms behind you.
  3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 for 5 breaths.

Yoga for Core Strength

Yoga for Core Strength

Knee to Nose Core Flow
  1. From Downward Facing Dog, extend your right leg into 3-Legged Dog. Ensure your hips and shoulders are square.
  2. Exhale and engage your pelvic muscles as you roll your body forward. As you begin to shift your shoulders over your wrists into plank, round your back and tuck your chin as bring your knee towards your nose.
  3. Inhale and extend your leg back into 3-Legged Dog.
  4. This time, exhale as you begin to shift your shoulders over your wrists into plank and draw your right knee to the outside of your right elbow, engaging the outer oblique muscles. Keep your hips lifted throughout and core engaged.
  5. Inhale and extend your leg back into 3-Legged Dog.
  6. On this final engagement, exhale as you begin to shift your shoulders over your wrists into plank and draw your right knee across your body towards the left elbow. Keep your hips lifted throughout and core engaged.
  7. Inhale and extend your leg back into 3-Legged Dog.
  8. Repeat steps 1 – 7 with the opposite leg.

Yoga for Core Strength

Yoga for Core Strength

Yoga for Core Strength

High Lunge with a Kick
  1. From your Downward Facing Dog, step your right foot between your hands with the knee directly over the ankle. Tuck your back toes under your foot and straighten your back leg into High Lunge. Ensure your hips and shoulders are square as your raise your arms above your head. Hold your pose.
  2. Exhale and begin to shift your weight onto your right foot as you kick your back left leg forward. Engage your core for balance as you extend your left leg in front of your and draw your hands towards your sides for balance.
  3. Inhale and draw the left leg back into High Lunge.
  4. Repeat steps 1 – 3 for 5 breaths.
  5. Repeat this sequence on your left side.

Yoga for Core Strength

Yoga for Core Strength

 

Our 4 week progressive core sequences

This 4 week sequence is brought to you by Diana Ratana of Diana Ratana Yoga.  Diana took her first yoga class at the age of 16 and from there, she quickly fell in love with the compassion, kindness, energy, and confidence she gained from yoga. What began as a means to get fit turned into a lifelong passion. Today, she instructs at Hot Feet Fitness where she regularly uses the lessons and tools learned from practice in her day to day life and vice versa. Her mission is to teach others how to learn from yoga and put their best foot forward to gain the most from their lives as well.

Yoga for Core Strength

Week 2 | Endure | Yoga For The Core

Reblogged from Seattle Yoga News

 

This week is all about building endurance. We’ve set our base last week with core stabilization poses, now we can really work on building onto our poses.

Plank Crunches
  1. Start in high plank position: Ensure that the shoulders are aligned over the wrists, and spread your fingers as you press down onto your knuckles and palm. Distribute the weight evenly across your hands (grounding of the 4 corners of your hand). Keep your legs straight with your toes tucked under your feet and facing forward. Imagine a long line extending from your head to your heels which keeps your abdomen, legs, and bottom engaged. Draw power in your plank and breath, take a moment to find your base.
  2. As you exhale, engage your pelvic floor to stabilize yourself, then begin to lift your right leg up and back. Draw power in your balance.
  3. As you inhale, extend your left arm up and forward, continue pressing the mat away and engaging your pelvic floor as you balance.
  4. Once you’ve found stability, exhale as you begin to round your spine while keep your core engaged. Bend your elbow and knee to touch beneath your belly. Keep your belly drawn throughout.
  5. On the next inhale, re-extend the limb.
  6. Repeat this sequence for 3 – 5 reps, then engage on the opposing limbs.

Yoga for Core Strength

Plank Crunches: Extended Opposite Arm and Leg

 Yoga for Core Strength

Plank Crunches: Opposite Knee to Elbow

 

Side Plank Crunches
  1. As we build onto our plank sequence, start again in high plank. Keep your pelvic floor engaged and abs flexed. As you begin to exhale, shift your weight onto your right palm and extend your left arm towards the sky. Turn your right foot onto its knifes edge as you stack the left side of the body over the right. Hips and shoulders should be stacked directly on top of one another.
  2. Extend your left forearm over your ear as you inhale. As you exhale, simultaneously bend the elbow and knee to touch. Keep your belly drawn throughout.
  3. On the next inhale, re-extend the limbs.
  4. Repeat this sequence 3 – 5 times, then repeat on the opposite side.Yoga for Core Strength
Side Plank with Extended Arm to Front

Yoga for Core Strength


Side Plank Elbow to Knee

 

Dolphin Plank and Legs In + Out
  1. Lie on your belly with your elbows directly under your wrists and your feet hips width apart.
  2. Brace your core and shift your weight onto your forearms and toes. Lift your hips off of your mat and hold. Image a long line extending from your shoulders to your heels as your breath through your plank.
  3. As you exhale, jump your feet past hips width and hold your plank. Your feet will be wide and possibly land off the mat.
  4. On your next inhale, jump your feet back together onto your mat at hips width.
  5. Repeat for 5 – 10 breaths, keeping your core engaged throughout.
  6. Yoga for Core Strength
Dolphin Plank Pose
Eagle (Garudasana) Crunches
  1. Lie on your back with knees bent and cross your left leg over your right (if you can, attempt to tuck the right foot behind the left calf).
  2. In similar fashion, cross your arms with your left arm on top of your right (if you can, attempt to have the forearms cross and palms meet).
  3. Engage pelvic muscles on your next breath in and on your exhale, bend your knees and elbows to touch. Lift your chest and engage your core as your knees and elbows meet.
  4. On your next breath in, lie back and extend your limbs back in neutral position.
  5. Repeat for 5 – 10 breaths.
Yoga for Core Strength
Supine Garudasana Arms and Legs

Yoga for Core Strength

Bring the Elbows and Knees to Touch in Supine Garudasana

This 4 week sequence is brought to you by Diana Ratana of Diana Ratana Yoga.  Diana took her first yoga class at the age of 16 and from there, she quickly fell in love with the compassion, kindness, energy, and confidence she gained from yoga. What began as a means to get fit turned into a lifelong passion. Today, she instructs at Hot Feet Fitness where she regularly uses the lessons and tools learned from practice in her day to day life and vice versa. Her mission is to teach others how to learn from yoga and put their best foot forward to gain the most from their lives as well.

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Beautifully Simple Yoga Photos

 

 

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Above: Erin Joosse, Hein Hong and Julia Nathe from Source Yoga
I recently saw an article that had a list of extreme yoga poses on Instagram. Here are a few of my thoughts as I scrolled through:
  1. Wow, impressive abilities!
  2. Wait, how on earth did she get her foot there?!
  3. Hmmm, if this is yoga, I must be doing something wrong because I can’t (and probably never will) be able to do that

Apparently, I was not alone. I looked at the comments to see numerous people stated that images like this caused them to never try yoga. That it wasn’t inspirational, and they would never be able to do that.

On one hand, I get it. Fancy photos of fancy poses that are really hard, get a lot more interaction than simple poses that literally anyone can do. We have a race to do the craziest poses possible and as we all rush to the finish line, we’ve left behind many people who could truly use the healing benefits of yoga.

The thing that blows me away about the constant sharing of poses no one can do is that these are postures that you will almost never see in a yoga class. If you decided one day to give yoga a try for stress relief, chances are really good that you won’t be asked to put your foot behind your head.  Chances are also good that your teacher can’t put his or her foot behind their head.  So the fact that the image of yoga has become poses that aren’t often taught in class is what confuses me the most.  Imagery of simple postures can be just as beautiful as insanely extreme variations.

There is a huge issue behind sharing photos of insanely advanced yoga postures without any backstory.  That issue is people will attempt these poses.  You may think as a yoga teacher that no one will ever try doing something like a headstand backbend without years of practice.  Trust me… they will.  While photographing yoga fans at various yoga festivals I’ve seen individuals who have very shaky inversion practices attempt headstand backbends because I had a camera in my hand.  Where did they get the inspiration? You guessed it… They saw it on Instagram.

Should you share advanced asana images?

I’m sure it sounds like I’m someone who is completely anti-advanced asana on social media.  In all honesty, I’m really not.  I just believe it should be done mindfully.  Be sure your followers know that you’ve been practicing for a long time.  Tell them about modifications, what poses you did to warm up, or how long you worked on this pose.

It’s awesome to share your accomplishments in asana, and when you are able to conquer a pose you’ve been working on forever, you should be super proud!  However, as someone who is creating and shifting the image of yoga, it’s important to be aware of the influence you have.

My 2017 intention for Sukha is to try to create an image of what someone could actually expect in a yoga class.  I hope to create a space on the internet where child’s pose gets as much attention as handstands.  To make sure that people who are exploring the idea of seeking the healing benefits of yoga have a place where they can feel inspired instead of intimidated.

Fear not, newbie, the poses on this post are far more likely to be in your future than really anything you’ll ever see on Instagram.  Yoga classes are full of support and joy, usually without pain or extreme postures.

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Above: Alison Olt Kerr from PranaVis Medicine

Tacoma Yoga Photographer

Above: Pamela Higley from Pamela Higley Yoga

core-strength-01

Above: Diana Ratana from Diana Ratana Yoga

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Above: Lara Ederer and Dikla Kafka-Hamudot from Yoga Bliss
Seattle Yoga Photographer
Above: Connie Lucas from Yoga Soleil

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Above: Howard Lamb from Yoga for Life

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Above: Humble and Grace

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Above: Angela Glaz from Eka Yoga Seattle

hot-feet-01

Above: Teanna Gentry from Hot Feet Fitness

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Above: Anne Arntson from Yoga Soleil 

Seattle Yoga Photographer

Above: Connie Zuck from Core Power Yoga
Yoga for Core Strength

Week 1 | Stabilize | Yoga For The Core

Yoga For The Core

Reblogged from Seattle Yoga News

Our goal for this week is to set the base for our practice. The set of poses for this week aim to stabilize and strengthen our core. Repeat this sequence daily as we build strength for our core flow sequence next week.

Cat/Cow
  1. Start in table top position, take a moment to find yourself on your mat. Ensure that the shoulders are aligned over the wrist, hips over knees.
  2. As you inhale, press the mat away from you as you lift your chest and tailbone towards the sky. Let the belly sink towards the earth. Lift your head to look forward. You are now in Cow Pose.
  3. As you exhale, round the spine, continue pressing the mat away as you tuck the chin towards your chest and tailbone in. Keep the belly drawn in and spine curved towards the sky. You are now in Cat Pose.
  4. Repeat this sequence 3 – 5 times.
Yoga for Core Strength
Cow Pose
Yoga for Core Strength
Cat Pose

Cat and Cow Crunches

  1. As we build onto our cat/cow sequence, start again in table top. Extend your left arm forward in alignment with your shoulder. Extend the opposite right leg back in alignment with your hip. Keep your belly drawn as we hold in our balance for a few breaths.
  2. As you exhale, begin to curl the spin back into cat pose while simultaneously bending the elbow and drawing the knee and elbow to touch beneath your belly. Keep your belly drawn throughout.
  3. On the next inhale, re-extend the limbs to meet back in extended table top.
  4. Repeat steps 1 – 3 for 10 breaths, being sure to sync your breath to your movements.
  5. Repeat steps 1 – 4 on the opposing limbs.

Yoga for Core Strength

Yoga for Core Strength

Boat Pose (Navasana)
  1. Sit on your mat with your legs extended forward in a comfortable seat. Draw your belly in to protect your lower spine as you begin to lift through the top of your sternum and lean back from your seat (feel free to place your hands on your mat for support). Make sure your spine doesn’t round as you lean back. Keep the chest moving forward in Navasana.
  2. Begin to balance on the seat of your two sitting bones and tailbone as you lift your feet from your mat. Keep your belly drawn as you exhale and draw your feel to half-mast (knee level). Option to extend legs into full boat.
  3. Draw your arms to shoulders level as you hold your pose. Hold for 5 – 10 full breaths.

Yoga for Core Strength

Dolphin Plank
  1. Lie on your belly with your elbows directly under your wrists and your feet hips width apart.
  2. Brace your core and shift your weight onto your forearms and toes. Lift your hips off of your mat and hold. Image a long line extending from your shoulders to your heels as your breath through your Dolphin Plank.
  3. Hold the pose for 5 – 10 breaths.
  4. Option to hold plank on your knees as needed.

Yoga for Core Strength

Side Dolphin Planks
  1. From Dolphin Plank, begin to shift to the right side of your body; shifting your weight onto your right forearm and the knife’s edge of your right foot.
  2. Keep your core tight and hips lifted as you extend your left arm towards the sky.
  3. Hold the post for 5 – 10 breaths.

Yoga for Core Strength

Sphinx Pose (Salamba Bhujangasana)
  1. Lie on your belly and forearms with your elbows bent and placed directly underneath the shoulders.
  2. As you inhale, lift your upper torso and head away from the floor in a slight upper back backbend.
  3. Use the traction from the arms to lengthen through the belly and lower back. Hold the pose for 5 – 10 breaths.

Yoga for Core Strength

 

This 4 week sequence is brought to you by Diana Ratana of Diana Ratana Yoga.  Diana took her first yoga class at the age of 16 and from there, she quickly fell in love with the compassion, kindness, energy, and confidence she gained from yoga. What began as a means to get fit turned into a lifelong passion. Today, she instructs at Hot Feet Fitness where she regularly uses the lessons and tools learned from practice in her day to day life and vice versa. Her mission is to teach others how to learn from yoga and put their best foot forward to gain the most from their lives as well.