Round Out Your Practice: Happiness
Embrace the asanas that challenge you the most, and find a more lasting sense of contentment.
1. OM: Begin your practice with the chant om.
2. BREATHING EXERCISE:
With your hands on your shoulders and your elbows extended away from each other, twist to the left as you inhale and twist to the right as you exhale.
Repeat 20 times and then reverse the movement for 20 times more.
3. WARM-UP VINYASA:
Lie down on your back with your legs apart, toes pointing outward and arms about a foot from the sides of your body, palms up.
As you inhale, roll the arms and legs toward each other so the inner elbows face the floor and the toes point toward one another.
On an exhalation, let the arms and legs roll back out. Repeat twice.
On your third inhalation, come into a neutral position and draw the right knee into your chest. Exhale.
As you inhale, lift your nose to your knee, and as you exhale, lower the upper body and the right leg.
Repeat with left leg, then repeat entire sequence twice.
4. SUN SALUTATION:
Standing Forward Bend
Standing Forward Bend
Repeat this sequence twice.
Then do it again, incorporating Warrior I and II on each side after Down Dog. When you come back to Down Dog, go through Four-Limbed Staff, Upward Dog, and Down Dog.
Stay in your last Down Dog for 3 to 5 breaths, then jump forward and move through the entire sequence again, ending in Mountain.
5. FEATURED SEQUENCE: Then move through the happiness sequence.
Extended Side Angle
Wide-Legged Standing Forward Bend
Bound Angle Pose
Wide-Angle Seated Forward Bend
Revolved Head-to-Knee Pose
Perform the sequence twice--once leading with the right leg, then leading with the left.
Do Headstand either against a wall or in the middle of the room.
Come into Child's Pose for 5 breaths.
7. CHEST OPENERS/BACKBENDS:
Sit in Hero's Pose
After several breaths, twist to the right for 3 breaths
Unwind, and then twist to the left for 3 breaths
Shift forward to your hands and knees and make your way into Down Dog
After a few breaths, shift forward through Plank and then way down onto your tummy
Then do Bow Pose 3 times
Follow this with Up Dog and Down Dog, then jump forward, landing between your hands in a cross-legged position
Swing your legs forward and roll down onto your back for Bridge Pose; hold it for for 5 breaths
Do Happy Baby Pose for 10 breaths
Draw your knees together and come into a supine twist to the left
Repeat to the right. Slowly roll onto your back.
9. CLOSING POSES:
10-minute Corpse Pose.
11. MEDITATION: Perform a closing meditation to round out your practice.
12. OM: End your practice with the chant om.
Cyndi Lee is the founder of OM yoga center in New York City. She is a longtime practitioner of Tibetan Buddhism and has been teaching yoga for over 20 years. Cyndi is the author of OM Yoga: A Guide to Daily Practice and Yoga Body, Buddha Mind.
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