Category Archives: Yoga Sequences

Yoga for Seniors: A Sequence to Help with Your Mobility


Try this practice, which emphasizes joint health and offers movements that can be incorporated into your daily life, to help maintain or improve mobility and stability for healthy aging.

I recommend Pawanmuktasana, or the joint-freeing series from the Bihar School of Yoga. If your joints are stiff, movement will be limited. This series of small joint movements stimulates flow of synovial fluid at friction points where tendons pass over bones in your shoulders, fingers, hips, and knees. Move your spine in five directions daily: Stretch up, fold forward, sidebend from right to left and left to right, and gently backbend. These are the “gold star” movements that should be a regular part of your home practice. This sequence can be used as a warm-up or as your main asana practice.

Watch it 

Practice the joint-freeing series with Jana Long at dogdewormer.net/yogaforseniors

About the author

Jana Long is a certified yoga therapist and a Yoga Alliance Continuing Education Provider. She is also writer, a certified Master Gardener, and an ardent student of astrology. Learn more at powerofonecenter.com.

http://dogdewormer.net

Even Seane Corn Had an Awkward First Yoga Class

In her new book, Revolution of the Soul, social activist and yoga teacher Seane Corn details how ill and awkward she felt during her first yoga class and what kept her going back for more.

Seane Corn

After hearing about yoga for years and witnessing the changes it made in David Life, owner of Life Café in New York City, where I waitressed, and Sharon Gannon, the head waitress, I’d decided to see for myself what the hoopla was about. I’d come to Integral Yoga, where everyone dressed in white and everything was absolutely pristine. Except for me. I looked down at my gray sweatpants, grease stains on the thighs from where I had wiped my hands after working on my motorcycle. I hadn’t showered and knew without a doubt that black eyeliner and mascara lay smeared under my eyes. I was a bit of a mess.

I was told to sign in and remove my shoes, so I kicked off my black-leather Screaming Mimi combat boots and tossed them toward the rest of the shoes on the floor, but I left my socks on. Going barefoot in a public place that wasn’t a park or beach kinda grossed me out, plus I often cut and peeled the skin off my big toes and heels when I was anxious and I didn’t want anyone to see that.

The woman behind the counter, also wearing white, looked calm and sweet. I noticed, when she raised her arm to reach for something, that she had a thick patch of armpit hair. I wondered if Sharon shaved her pits. Note to self: Stop shaving, buy something white and… take a bath.

See also How to Change Your Life With Yoga

Now, Yoga

The woman behind the desk announces it is time for …

Try This Shaking Exercise Before You Start Your Yoga Practice


Forero Puerta starts her workshops with a shaking practice, which she leads to the beat of up-tempo, rhythmic music.

Stand and close your eyes if it feels safe, or soften your gaze, relaxing your eyelids. Forero Puerta starts her workshops with a shaking practice, which she leads to the beat of up-tempo, rhythmic music. Wiggle all of your fingers, rotate your wrists, and raise and drop your shoulders. Shake your arms and legs. Start jumping and continue for the length of a song while tapping (head, collarbone, or another area) to invite more sensation to various parts of your body.     

http://dogdewormer.net

Try this Joint-Freeing Series from Jana Long


Try this practice, which emphasizes joint health and offers movements that can be incorporated into your daily life, to help maintain or improve mobility and stability for healthy aging.

Try this practice, which emphasizes joint health and offers movements that can be incorporated into your daily life, to help maintain or improve mobility and stability for healthy aging.     

http://dogdewormer.net

6 Deep Hip Openers to Try Instead of Pigeon Pose

These powerful alternates will help you open your hips in all directions.

Knowing the planes helps us improve range of motion in our hips.

Many of us could use more hip opening. From sitting to standing to walking, our legs are constantly working to support our upper bodies. All this effort can make hip muscles chronically tight, especially when we’re sitting for long periods at desks or in cars. 

Understanding Hip-Opening

The phrase “hip-opening” often creates confusion, as many people assume that it’s similar to opening a door or book, and therefore limited to taking your legs apart. But opening your hips means creating mobility in all directions. 

Hips are ball and socket joints, which are the most mobile joints in your body. The head of each thigh bone (femur bone) forms the “ball’, which sits in the socket (acetabulum) of your pelvis. 

Ball and socket joints also do circumduction, which means moving in all three planes, like when you swing your leg in a circle.

See also From Hypermobility to Stability: What You Need to Know About Open Hips

In order to stretch a particular muscle group, you must take your body in the opposite direction of that group’s movement. For example, if you’ve been sitting for long periods, which is hip flexion (taking thighs toward your chest), you’ll want to extend your hip (taking your thighs back) to release your hip flexors.

Your Hips in All Planes of Movement 

We are three-dimensional beings. We move in space in many different directions. We can go forward and backward, side to side, and inward and outward. And most of the time, we move in some combination of those directions all at once. For example, to set up our front legs in Pigeon, we must both open our legs to the …

6 Yoga Poses for Athletes with Tight Hamstrings

Improve flexibility and mobility in your hamstrings for better performance and to prevent injuries.

Hamstrings are a group of muscles that run along the back of your thighs, starting at your lower pelvis and attaching to your knee and lower legs. They are often the culprit for various sports injuries and chronic pain due to tightness. Once your hamstrings are tight, it can lead to poor posture, low-back pain, and a variety of other issues. Yoga poses can be critical additions to most training programs since they can help improve flexibility and mobility in your hamstrings and set you up for better movement patterns while running, biking, and playing sports. Here, three key benefits of yoga for athletes, plus six poses to support your sport.

1. Improved Performance and Joint Health

The posterior chain (muscles along the back of your body) is vital in all aspects of athletic performance. Strong and flexible hamstrings can improve running efficiency, agility, and power. Your body will recruit other muscle groups when needing to compensate for tight hamstrings, which will require more energy and can contribute to injuries. A full range of motion will also ensure healthy joints.

2. A Healthy Spine

Tight hamstrings reduce the mobility of your pelvis, which in turn increases strain and pressure on your lower back. Your hamstrings are an essential part of your knees, pelvis, and spine health. Flexibility in this area will support a proper upright posture. Everyday movement patterns like walking, running, sitting lead to shortening and tightening of your hamstring muscles. Consistent stretches to increase flexibility in this area will counter and bring them back to a balanced and healthy state.

3. Lower Risk of Injuries

If your hamstrings are tight, it can cause the posterior (rear) tilt of your pelvis and lead to strain and weakness …

Try This Sequence to Confront Your Fears and Unleash Your Inner Warrior

I always felt that yoga offered more than a great stretch or workout. It gave me a way to connect with others and myself at the same time. You can find a bit of that feeling in this sequence.

Jivana Heyman

Do you ever find yourself clenching your jaw waiting for something bad to happen? Or waking up in the morning with a sense of dread? Whether they come in small doses or huge heart-stopping moments of panic, these feelings can be traced back to fear, which can be debilitating, producing a gnawing anxiety that sucks the joy out of life.

In my life, one particularly fearful time stands out: leading up to the moment I told my mother I was gay. I was 17 and confused. I’d found myself living a secret life and not sharing it with her. Speaking my truth was a major victory, and it made me understand even more how fear had been ruling my life.

Those of us who are marginalized tend to internalize our oppression, which can manifest as fear. During this time in my life, I was scared of being different and of being excluded from society—tossed out like garbage. Mostly, I feared disappointing my mother. My self-worth was so intimately tied to what she thought of me.

See also 5 Poses to Help You Own Your Worth

It wasn’t until I began practicing yoga regularly that I recognized I was living in a constant state of fear, even after coming out to my mother. A mild panic was always boiling just below the surface. Savasana (Corpse Pose) gave it away. I remember getting very quiet, maybe for the first time ever without the help of alcohol or drugs. I jerked awake as if I had fallen asleep too quickly. But I …