Whether you are looking for simple yogic postures or want to strengthen your abs, we have prepared a list of asanas that help you achieve the best shape and attain mindfulness this new year. Let’s get going!
From A-list celebrities to the common man, everyone is practicing yoga these days—for a good reason. Yoga provides great benefits to one’s health beyond balance and flexibility.
It helps in fighting anxiety, stress, and depression, and minimizes inflammation in the body. Regular yoga practice also reduces the pain that migraine gives to your brain. Yoga not only promotes relaxation but is also considered one of the best exercises for weight Loss.
The best part of yoga is that it is so diverse, anybody can practice it; there are numerous asanas for beginners as well as seasoned yogis. Some postures require less physical exertion which is best for elderly people like laughter yoga and facial poses.
People in their mid-40s can practice rigorous yoga-based workouts. No matter what you choose, yoga surely offers health perks to individuals who practice it. So, take out your mats, and let’s learn some yoga postures that suit your goal and mood.
Top 10 Yoga Poses For a Healthy Body & Mind
The best way to start a yoga-based workout is by targeting a region such as the arms, core, or legs. Whole-body strengthening is vital to gain fitness but if you want to reap health benefits and correct muscle imbalance, then area-focused yoga is what you need.
A strong core yogic exercise improves spinal health and allows you to adopt challenging balancing postures such as tree pose, crow pose, and warrior II. Check out these core yoga-based workouts that tone your core and target your abs.
1. Triangle pose with lifted arms (Trikonasana)
Regular practice of Trikonasana provides great relief from arm tension and back pain. This posture targets your abs and offers great flexibility to your body.
- Stand on your yoga mat. Keep your legs 3 feet apart parallel to each other.
- Bring your right foot forward 90° while your left foot is about 5-10° inward. Now take a deep breath while lifting your arms with palms facing downward aligning with your shoulders.
- Stretch forward and reach the right foot with the right fingertip. Now extend the left hand up (palm upward facing) and gaze toward the left middle finger.
- Maintain this posture for a whole breath prior to reaching both arms and engaging your core, like holding a ball. Hold this pose for 6-7 breaths and repeat the same on the other side.
2. Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana)
In this asana, you will lift your body off the yoga mat using your core. This helps in strengthening the body and keeping your arms light. This pose enhances the flexibility of your spinal cord and is helpful in relieving menstrual and sciatica pain.
- Lie down on your mat over your stomach. Place your feet together on the ground.
- Keep your hands aligned with your chest.
- Take a deep breath while engaging your abs, back, and glutes to elevate your upper body off the yoga mat.
- Your pelvis should remain on the mat. Keep your elbows close to the body side. Ensure your chest is open and your shoulders are towing downward.
- Maintain this posture for at least seven breaths, once done; relax.
3. Plank Pose (Phalakasana)
This yoga-based workout helps in building core and arm strength. Practicing poses that target abs are often heating which greatly helps digestive organs and metabolism. This is one of the best ways to detox as it makes you sweat.
- Lie down on the mat over your stomach. Align your wrist with your shoulders.
- Tow your belly button toward your spine while extending one leg back with toes tucked at a time. Your spine should be straight like an erect line from skull to heels while keeping your core and arms engaged.
- You can also push up from the yoga mat. Unbend your elbows to rest on your hands to do a high plank.
- Beginners should maintain this pose for 30 secs and experienced can push their bodies to stay for 3-4 minutes in this posture.
4. Side plank pose (Vasisthasana)
This pose is a variation of the standard plank that is designed to provide strength to arms and core, especially shoulders, hips, and obliques.
- From the Phalakasana (plank posture), you will turn to the exterior edge of your right foot while keeping your core engaged.
- Stack your left foot on the right feet top. This way you will shift your weight to the righter side.
- Gradually elevate your left hand. Look straight in the front or to the fingertip of the left hand.
- Maintain this posture for 6-7 breaths before resuming the plank pose.
- Repeat the same on the other side.
5. Cat pose (Marjariasana)
A regular cat pose massages your spine. If you modify it with crunches it works in concentration and balance.
- Keep your knees and hands aligned with your shoulders along with your hips and wrists parallel to your knees.
- Elevate your right hand (fingers pointing forward) to the shoulder while inhaling. Balance your body while raising your left leg to the height of the hip.
- Keep your leg down while exhaling for 5-6 breaths before resuming to the very first position. Repeat the same for another side.
6. Camel posture (Ustrasana)
A back-bending or camel pose provides stretch to the frontal body. It offers stability and flexibility in the spinal column.
- Kneel down with hip distance apart. Place the top of your feet on the mat.
- Place both hands on the back of the hips with fingers facing downward. Gradually lean backward to reach for the heels.
- Stretch and open your chest and hang your head backward.
- Maintain this pose for 6-7 breadths. Bring your head to the former position while descending the asana.
Best Yoga postures for beginners to start this new year
If you are about to begin your yogic journey this new year, then you might get confused with the options and odd asana names. Here is a list of some simple yoga asanas, pick any of them according to your comfort and preference.
7. Downward-facing dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)
Might sound and seem easy but not so. We have seen a few beginners leaning way far forward making it look like a plank. That’s not how you do it. In this posture:
- Put most of your weight on your legs and keep your hips higher.
- Stretch your heels toward the floor (don’t touch the floor).
- Bend your knees a bit to ease the move while keeping your feet parallel
8. Warrior I (Virabhadrasana I)
Warrior I is perfect for beginners but attaining the position right is quite tricky.
- Kneel down on the mat with your hands in front of the knee and shoulders directly below the hips.
- Lift your knees from the mat while exhaling. Extend your tailbone away from the pelvis back, and elevate sitting bones toward the roof. Now move your legs from your inward ankles up via your groins. Stretch your heels.
- Make your outer arms firm while pressing the finger’s base. Lift your inner arms to the top of your shoulders. Keep your head in the middle of your upper arms.
- Maintain this pose for 9-10 breaths and come back to the former position.
9. Mountain pose (Tadasasana)
This pose is not as popular as the downward-facing dog pose but is best for beginners. It strengthens legs and improves posture.
- Stand with feet apart (parallelly) a few inches.
- Lift and widen the toes and balls of your feet, and put them back on the floor. Now gently rock side to side and back and forth, slowly minimize this swaying to a stationary position. You will feel the energy from the feet to the core.
- Elevate your sternum top toward the roof. Expand your collarbones.
- Lower your arms by your torso. Balance your head over the middle of the pelvis and breath in-out.
10. Child pose (Balasana)
Child pose is one of the easiest yoga postures for beginners. There are many variations of this form that provides relaxation to the body. It also helps in managing stress and regulating blood pressure.
- Kneel down, touch your toes, and sit over your heels.
- Now separate your knees aligned to your hips.
- Take a deep breath and bend forward. Stay for 30 secs to 2 minutes or more.
- If your head cannot touch the floor, rest it on a pillow or folded blanket. But avoid giving tension to your neck.
Yoga offers unique perks. Remember to do a proper warm-up session before attempting any of these yoga asanas. Start slow, be mindful, and watch how your body reacts to these poses.
If you are a beginner, attempt novice stretches whereas an intermediate or seasonal yogi can try out the toning and abs-strengthening yoga-based workouts.
Whatever you choose, keep in mind that you are doing the best for your body and mind’s well-being. Now pick your favorite asanas and increase flexibility, minimize some stress in your life, and regain composure this new year!
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