Benefits Of a Morning Yoga Practice
Yoga has so many health and happiness benefits that can be transformational for yogis. A regular practice is vital for truly getting all the perks of yoga and so incorporating yoga into your morning routine is a sure-fire way of staying consistant in your practice!
It is true that our body is a temple and it deserves to be nourished with our attention and movement and morning yoga is an excellent way of practicing self care and self love.
So many people struggle with health conditions, high stress levels and bad posture and yoga can aid in all of these discomforts of today's living! Let's check out the benefits of a morning routine.
1. Reduces Morning Muscle Stiffness
Asanas (postures) or stretching helps muscles and joints loosen up, remove the stiffness and thus allow the proper flow of the blood which reduces stiffness.
2. Reduces Stress
Gifting yourself every day time in the mornings to get going and doing yoga will allow your entire body’s cycle including a nervous system to get back on track. This will also help you to start your day in a relaxed state and let go of the stress of you've been carrying.
3. Improves Breath
Pranayama (breathing exercises) is a practice to allow you to control your breathing. Pranayama has been provem to improve lung capacity which is the maximum amount of air that can be expelled from your lungs. This can be beneficial for the functioning of all your organs.
4. Releases Happy Hormones:
Hormones play a crucial role in our bodily process, helping regulate our moods and can promote positive feelings and happiness. Studies have shown that meditation and yoga in the morning can help to produce dopamine and endorphin (happy hormones) and which helps you start your day right!
5. Self Care Time
Having a designated self-care routine is vital for a happy mind and healthy body. We live busy lives and it can take it's toll on our wellbeing. a little self care goes a long way snd so an established yoga practice is your 'me time'. Setting aside even 10 minutes helps to build mental and emotional resilience.
6. Improves Digestive Health
It is well known that your gut and brain are connected. Doing yoga in the morning, boosts your metabolism which aids the digestive system to release waste products and digest nutrients efficiently. A good gut is vital for good health!
Not only are there all of these health benefits (we have only listed a few of them!) but a morning yoga routine helps you to start you day productively and encourages your health and wellbeing to be prioritised for the whole day!
Our Top 5 Morning Yoga Poses For Beginners
1. Surya Namaskar - Sun Salutations
Okay so we know this isn't exactly a pose and is more of a sequence but nothing feels better than flowing through a few sun salutations in the morning (bonus points if you practice outside in the morning sun!).
How to do: Begin in mountain pose, then fold forward into flat back, come into plank transition into cobra or upwards dog through a chaturanga (or knees, chest, chin). Push back into downward facing dog, step or jump to the top of the mat and fold forward into your forward fold with flat back and inhale, returning to mountain pose.
2. Anjaneyasana - Low Lunge
This pose is an amazing hip opener and provides a fabulous stretch for your arms and torso. It feels absolutely incredible after a long nights sleep and you also get to build strength in your legs while you're at it!
How to do: Stand on your mat facing forwards, place one leg in front of you and bend your back leg coming down on to that knee. Front knee should also bend and should stay at a 90 degree angle, with your knees stacked over your ankle.
3. Prasarita Padottanasana - Wide Leg Forward Fold
This pose has a glorious lengthening effect in the spine, a deep stretch through the hamstrings, and the effects of the inversion help you face the day with peace and clarity...what more can you want?
How to do: Stand with your legs wider than hip distance (only go as far as is comfortable) and then fold forward from your hips. You may wish to reach your hands behind your feet, rest them on the floor or interlock your fingers and stretch behind your back for an added stretch in the arms.
4. Ardha Matsyendrasana -Half Lord of the Fishes Pose
As with all twisting poses, this posture promotes a healthy spine. It also stimulates the internal organs, promoting healthy digestion so it is a great pose to do before breakfast!
How to do: Sit on your mat with a straight spine and legs extended. Take one leg and cross it over your opposite thigh. You can stay with your legs in this position or you can bend the extended leg towards you (with your heel coming towards your crossed legs glute).
5. Balasana - Child's Pose
Child's pose is an excellent way of grounding down and reconnecting to yourself which can be much needed after a nights rest. Take time in this pose to focus on your breath and your thoughts, helping to findclarity and focus throughout the morning.
How to do: Come into tabletop position on your hands and knees. Extend your arms forward and sit back onto your heels. Rest your forehead onto the mat.
What is your favourite pose to do in the morning? Let us know in the comments!
By: Katrina Scales