If you’ve ever let out a big groan trying to lower your heels to the mat in Downward-Facing Dog—or even while doing something as minor as climbing stairs—chances are you have tight hamstrings.
Some people are born with naturally short hamstrings, but muscle imbalances also play a role. So can too much activity. Repetitive overstretching of the muscle can cause micro-traumas or small tears in the muscle. These injuries are unfortunately uncommon among yoga practitioners, since many sequences contain hamstring stretching poses—like standing poses, standing forward bends, and seated forward bends—but few postures that strengthen the muscle.
This easy, 5-minute flow will loosen tight hamstrings while also freeing the lower back. Practice it daily to feel the most relief.