Build Beach-Body Confidence

Beat the heat with playful confidence-building poses you can take to the beach.
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Beat the heat with playful confidence-building poses you can take to the beach.
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Summertime, and the livin' is easy. You love yoga when it feels fun and free and joyful this time of year. To help keep your practice fresh, try the sequence vinyasa yoga teacher Kathryn Budig created. Whether you luxuriate in them during a weeklong beach vacation or try them as a break from your daily routine, these poses will open your body and mind as they tone, strengthen, and prepare you for the beach.

Asana practice can help you to create space in your physical body and in your thoughts, beliefs, and choices. Budig encourages you to open up, let go, and find more freedom in all areas of your life. Her sequence includes backbends, core strengtheners, and hip openers to help you open as you build strength and confidence to work toward expansive expressions of the variations on Vasisthasana (Side Plank Pose). The final pose feels playful, looks gorgeous, and creates confidence, says Budig. But don't obsess about perfection, she says, and don't worry if your top leg isn't perfectly straight in the final pose. Instead, focus on rooting your bottom foot and notice that you are able to lift up and expand the rest of your body more easily. And remember that the pose requires a willingness to be vulnerable and expose yourself. "You have to be open to falling and trying again, so drop your agenda and get out there and have fun." After all, having fun is what summer is all about.

To Begin

Stand in Tadasana (Mountain Pose) with your palms at your heart in Anjali Mudra (Salutation Seal). Set your intention to trust that everything unfolds as it should when you loosen your grip and allow yourself to be open. Connect to your breath and move through 5 rounds of Surya Namaskar A (Sun Salutation).

Watch: A video of this Home Practice sequence can be found online here.

To Finish

Take Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclining Bound Angle Pose) lying on your back with one hand above your navel and the other on your heart. Seal in your commitment to both physical and mental space. Absorb this lack of resistance and let the opportunity to open up pour in. Rest for 2 to 3 minutes, then extend your legs into Savasana (Corpse Pose).

Watch: A video of this Home Practice sequence can be found online here.

Kathryn Budig is a vinyasa flow teacher who is based in Los Angeles.