December is a time for reflections and resolutions. It’s also arguably, a time for celebrations! Most of us will be partaking in the many Christmas year-end parties and the gastronomical delights that come with them.
But in the spirit of the festivities, let us not forget that moderation is key in avoiding any complications.
A celebration is not an excuse to over-indulge oneself. But if you find yourself needing a recharge, rejuvenation or even a detox after the festivities, here are a few yoga asanas that might just do the trick.
The Seated Spinal Twist or Ardha Matsyendrasana as with most twisting poses, is known to aid digestion. This in turn encourages the elimination of waste. Begin seated with legs extended in front of you. Bend both knees and place your left heel as close to your right sit bone as you can. Cross your right foot over your left knee and plant it on the floor so your outer right ankle is next to your left knee. Reach your right arm behind you and place your palm on the floor. Cross your left elbow over your outer right thigh to gently increase the twist. Gaze behind you and over your right shoulder, holding the pose for five breaths. Then release the twist, straighten your legs out in front of you and do this pose with your left knee pointing up.
Three-Legged Down Dog or Tri Pada Adho Mukha Svanasana is a variation of the Down Dog. It encourages better blood circulation throughout the body. It also aids in mental detox and relieving stress. Come onto your hands and knees, so your hands are shoulder-width distance apart with your knees directly below each hip. Tuck your toes and straighten your legs, coming into Downward Facing Dog. Keeping your shoulders parallel with the floor, step both feet together and raise your right leg into the air. After five deep breaths, lower the leg and repeat this pose with the left leg lifted.
Another asana that’s effective in aiding digestion as well as relieving stress, anxiety and fatigues is the Janu Sirsasana or Head to Knee Pose. Begin in a seated position with both legs straight out in front of you. Bend the right knee and hold your right foot with your left hand. Bring your right arm under your right leg and reach around to grab on to the arch with your right hand. Pull your right toes down gently and place the sole of your right foot against your left inner thigh so your right heel is pointing up. Lengthen through the spine and fold your torso over your left leg. Place your hands on the floor on either side of your leg or on your shin. If your hamstrings and hips are more flexible, reach for your foot with the right hand holding the left wrist. Rest your forehead on your leg and stay here for five breaths. Continue lengthening the spine as you relax the shoulders away from your ears. Release your hands, sit up and switch sides.
Yoga is an ancient form that is arguably as old as time itself. It has stood strong through the ages and its practitioners transcend the different cultures and its benefits encompass the body and mind. Yoga also comes in many forms and one of them is Hot Yoga. Hot Yoga is a form of yoga that’s proven effective for both Body and Mind. Increased cardio capability, better focus and better physique are just some of its many benefits.
Daily yoga practice not only helps to cleanse the body of impurities but also helps to prevent the onset of illnesses and even diseases. Let yoga be your New Year’s resolution.
Written for LAVA Yoga Singapore