We totally get it. It’s cold outside, you’ve eaten way too much and there is no way in the world that you want to take off your new fleece pyjamas. Well, that’s fair enough, but surely there is still a chance that you could do a little yoga in the comfort of your own home?
Here, we have listed five of our favourite winter-warming yoga sequences to help you to connect with your inner-fire and create a little self-heat during your Christmas break. Fleece pyjamas are optional!
1. Cat/Cow with Lion Breathe
Practice your first few Cat/Cows with normal nostril breathing and then try with a beautiful Lion breathe.
• Lower yourself onto all fours with your knees directly under your hips and your wrists directly under your hands. Spread your fingers nice and wide and try to obtain a lovely straight spine.
• On your first inhale lower your belly button down towards your mat, spine curved and bottom sticking out. Lift your gaze and the crown of your head into the air, widening your sit bones. You are now in Cow.
• On your exhale, round the centre of your spine up towards the ceiling, drawing your belly button in towards your spine. Tuck your chin into your chest to come into Cat pose.
• Continue alternating between Cat and Cow with your normal yoga breath until you have a good rhythm and start to feel a bit of warmth.
• Then on your next exhale modify with a Lion breathe. Exhale fiercely through the mouth, making a "ha" sound. Open your mouth wide and stick out your tongue as far as you can towards your chin.
2. Downward Facing Dog to Plank Position
This is a fab sequence for arm strengthening as well as toning your abdominal muscles.
• Come back onto all fours with your wrists directly under your shoulders and your knees directly under your hips. Tuck your toes under and lift your hips, pushing your weight backwards into the heels and turning your body into a triangle. Enjoy a couple of breaths here in Downward Facing Dog.
• Bend one knee, then the other knee, alternating a few times to stretch out your calf muscles, if they are a little tight.
• From Downward Dog, shift your weight forwards until your shoulders stack directly above your wrists (keep your arms straight). This should feel and look like the top of a push-up.
• You are in proper alignment when you can shift back and forth between Plank and Down Dog without having to move your arms or legs. Legs are now straight, and you are on the balls of your feet.
• Continue alternating between the two positions, exhaling as you come forward to plank and inhaling as you pull back to down dog. Repeat for at least 30 seconds or until you feel nice and warm.
3. Tiger Curl Pose
This sequence will strengthen your abdominals as well as your hip flexors and create a lovely glow inside and outside your body.
• Back in your Downward Facing Dog, raise your right leg in the air behind you on an inhale.
• On your exhale, bend your right knee and then take the knee forward towards your chin. Hold for one breath. Press firmly through your hands, relaxing your shoulders downwards and actively lifting your thigh towards your front body.
• Inhale and take your right leg back in the air and then exhale it down.
• Repeat on your left side, raising your left leg into the air and then Tiger Curling it towards your chin.
• Practice between five to ten Tiger Curl sequences, depending on how warm you are feeling.
If these sequences get you in the mood and you fancy trying a group Yoga Flow class or a Hot Yoga class, then check out our Go Yoga Harrogate timetable to find a class that is right for you.