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Week 1: Hatha Yoga Beginners
Image Pose Description
yoga pose SavasanaLie on back with legs and arms apart. Feet to side, palms up. Release lower back to floor. Close eyes. Abdomen rises on inhale and falls on exhale. Feel heavy with each exhalation.
Alternatives: Crocodile. Child.
Benefits: Tune into body. Calm. Tranquil. Inner Peace. Clarity.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/YBe1nzunHJ0
Modifications: Knees bent. Blanket under knees. Blanket under head. Supine star (legs & arms spread out).
yoga pose Supine Arms OverheadLie on back. Palms down. Raise arms until they touch floor behind.
Alternatives: Crocodile. Child.
Benefits: Flexibility in spine, shoulders.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/usdHjjQNU64
Modifications: Knees bent. Blanket under knees and/or head.
yoga pose Reclined Leg Lift1. Lying in a Supine Position, with lower back released into floor, chin gently tucked, legs out straight, arms by sides - flex and extend ankles - in time with breath. 2. Bend knees and place flexed feet on floor - Slowly raise left leg to ceiling (keep foot flexed). Do same on right leg. Repeat. 3. Straighten both legs. Inhale - Raise straight left leg towards ceiling - with flexed foot. Exhale - release leg back to the floor - repeat to right leg. Continue - in time with breath. keep tail bone rolling upwards and sacrum engaged with floor. Chin tucked in. Keep extended leg engaged.
Benefits: Strengthens legs and core muscles.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/hfxg31WuIi8
Modifications: Blanket under head.
yoga pose Knees To ChestLie on back. Legs and arms extended. Both knees to chest. Clasp hands around knees. Wrap forearms over shins. Clasp each elbow with opposite hand. Keep back flat on mat. Release shoulder blades down toward waist. Draw tailbone and sacrum down. Lengthening spine. Softly rock backward and forward or side-to-side for a spinal massage. Tuck chin slightly. Gaze down. Hold. Release.
Benefits: Massages spin. Lower back stretch. Good for posture. Relieves tired legs. Strengthens back. Firms abdominals. Strengthens legs and hips. Cures joint pains. Improves blood circulation in legs.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/TVk4ht8V8J8
Modifications: Knee to chest.
yoga pose Revolved Abdomen TwistLie on back. Arms stretched out at shoulder height. Palms down. Bend knees. Feet flat on floor. Swing hips to left. Pull knees toward chest. Drop knees to floor on right side. Inhale. Lengthen spine. Lower shoulders to floor. Repeat on right.
Benefits: Flexible spine. Digestion. Circulation.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/XKunL4LW4fc?rel=0
Modifications: Keep legs straight. Cross legs. Hands behind head.
yoga pose BridgeLying extended on the floor - Bend knees. Set feet on floor close to sitting bones. Press inner feet and arms into floor. Inhale - Roll up from tailbone, hips, back. Engage buttock but don't tense. Arms by sides or clasp hands below pelvis.
Benefits: Chest, neck, spine stretch. Reduces backache.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/EU2JS2Pm2EY?rel=0
Modifications: Blanket under shoulders. Leg up. Use block.
Precautions : Knee or neck injury.
yoga pose Lying TwistLie on back. Raise right leg up and roll it over to left side (foot touches floor). Spread legs wide. Put left hand on right thigh for leverage. Switch sides.
Benefits: Releases lower back. Opens tight shoulders. Improves digestion. Quiet Mind. Eases sciatic pain.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/Tl9scRUR95g
Modifications: Lift head up.
yoga pose Knees To ChestLie on back. Legs and arms extended. Both knees to chest. Clasp hands around knees. Wrap forearms over shins. Clasp each elbow with opposite hand. Keep back flat on mat. Release shoulder blades down toward waist. Draw tailbone and sacrum down. Lengthening spine. Softly rock backward and forward or side-to-side for a spinal massage. Tuck chin slightly. Gaze down. Hold. Release.
Benefits: Massages spin. Lower back stretch. Good for posture. Relieves tired legs. Strengthens back. Firms abdominals. Strengthens legs and hips. Cures joint pains. Improves blood circulation in legs.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/TVk4ht8V8J8
Modifications: Knee to chest.
yoga pose End Of Sequence
yoga pose ChildSit on heels. Exhale, lower torso onto thighs releasing neck and head until forehead touches floor. Arms alongside legs. Keep buttocks in contact with heels.
Benefits: Stretches hips, thighs, ankles. Relieves back pain.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/DsXNXMoerMc?rel=0
Modifications: Interlock fingers behind back. Have a block under the forehead.
Precautions : Pregnancy. Knee injury.
yoga pose Extended ChildOn all fours. Wrists below shoulders. Knees under hips. Use hands to walk forward and lower chest to floor. Drop buttocks until they reach halfway to feet. Arms straight. Forehead touches floor. Push hips back and stretch spine.
Benefits: Stretches arms, shoulders, spine, hips.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/eqVMAPM00DM
Modifications: A) Interlock fingers behind back. B) Knees together (instead of separated). C) Curl the toes under (instead of flat). D) Place a rolled towel under your shins (take the stress off of your ankles). E) Place a yoga blanket underneath the knees for padding. F) Place a folded towel underneath the knees for padding. G) Place a bolster or pillow under your stomach or chest and stay for up 10 minutes. H) Go deeper into the hip stretch by spreading your knees wider.
Precautions : Knee injury.
yoga pose Table TopCome onto hands and knees. Bring knees hip-width apart. Palms directly under shoulders. Fingers facing forward. Gaze down. Flat back. Press into palms to drop shoulders away from ears. Press tail bone towards back wall and crown of head towards front wall.
Benefits: Transition for many floor postures. Lengthens spine.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/PGAntbDQ6Xg
Modifications: A) Make fists with hands (reduce pressure on wrists). B) Raise an arm. C) Raise one arm and the opposite leg. D) Folded towel or a wedge under the heels of your hands. E) Folded blanket or a yoga mat under your knees. F) Cat-Cow pose.
Precautions : Wrist, knee or neck pain.
yoga pose Gentle LungeStand in mountain pose. Step forward with right leg. Sustain slight bend in front leg while back leg raises on toe. Tighten pelvic muscles. Sustain upright trunk while lowering back leg until knee touches floor.
Alternatives: High or Low Lunge.
Benefits: Stretches legs, groin, hip flexors. Strengthens thighs, buttocks.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/Hmec1bQBQOE
Modifications: A) Arms raised. B) Arms clasped behind. C) Hands in prayer behind back. D) Hands on lower back. E) Forward bend.
Precautions : Knee injury.
yoga pose Cat CowSit with buttocks on heels. Come onto all fours. Wrists under shoulders. Pull navel into small of back. Inhale while raising head. Exhale, while lowering head and arching spine up like a cat. Repeat.
Benefits: Stretches lower back. Engage care. Decompress spine.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/kqnua4rHVVA
Modifications: Knee to chest. Raise leg or arm.
Precautions : Neck injury.
yoga pose Cat Head To KneeSit with buttocks on heels. Come onto all fours. Wrists under shoulders. Engage core. Bring forehead to right knee. Bring forehead to left knee. Modifications include: Cat pose with leg raised. Cat pose with arm raised. Cat pose with rib cage circles. Cat pose with feet to the side.
Benefits: Stretches lower back. Engage care. Decompress spine.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/sQ7xdUBKuS0
Modifications: Raise leg or arm.
Precautions : Neck injury.
yoga pose Cow Arm Leg RaisesStart on hands and knees. Knees set directly below hips and wrists. Centre head in a neutral position. Eyes looking at floor. Raise right arm and left leg. Hold. Raise left leg arm and right leg.
Alternatives: A) Cow pose. B) Raise arm. C) Raise leg.
Benefits: Stretches torso and neck. Massages spine, and core.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/sQ7xdUBKuS0
Modifications: Raise arm and leg to side.
Precautions : Neck or wrist injury.
yoga pose Cat CowSit with buttocks on heels. Come onto all fours. Wrists under shoulders. Pull navel into small of back. Inhale while raising head. Exhale, while lowering head and arching spine up like a cat. Repeat.
Benefits: Stretches lower back. Engage care. Decompress spine.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/kqnua4rHVVA
Modifications: Knee to chest. Raise leg or arm.
Precautions : Neck injury.
yoga pose ChildSit on heels. Exhale, lower torso onto thighs releasing neck and head until forehead touches floor. Arms alongside legs. Keep buttocks in contact with heels.
Benefits: Stretches hips, thighs, ankles. Relieves back pain.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/DsXNXMoerMc?rel=0
Modifications: Interlock fingers behind back. Have a block under the forehead.
Precautions : Pregnancy. Knee injury.
yoga pose End Of Sequence
yoga pose Shake outwrist shake, hand clenching, wrist bending, wrist joint rotation, arm shake, leg shake, Shake ankles, rotate ankles
Benefits: Warms body (reduces risk of injury).
yoga pose Shoulder RotationsRelax shoulders. Inhale and rotate shoulders up towards ears (keep neck and head relaxed). Exhale and rotate shoulders back and down. Try to squeeze shoulder blades together. Change direction. Feel shoulders becoming unglued.
Alternatives: Samashthiti (feet together).
Benefits: Improves posture.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/SzWxM_W4DNA
Modifications: Eyes closed.
yoga pose ChairStart in Mountain. Raise arms perpendicular to the floor. Keep arms parallel, palms facing inward. Bend knees. Firm shoulder blades against the back.
Benefits: Strengthens ankles, thighs, calves, and spine. Stretches chest.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/ySafTekJ3Ls
Modifications: A) Block between thighs. B) Join palms overhead. C) Use a wall behind to support the hips. D) Stretch arms in front of you in alignment with your chest, instead of raising them overhead. E) Placing hands on thighs with palms facing down. F) Widen your stance.
Precautions : Headache. Insomnia. Low blood pressure. Knee pain.
yoga pose Standing Forward BendBend knees slightly. Fold forward from waste. Hold onto back of feet, shins or legs. Release head down. Back of neck soft.
Alternatives: Tabletop. Gorilla.
Benefits: Stretch back, hams. Improves posture.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/hrp6Q_QyDkc?rel=0
Modifications: Bent knees. Loop fingers around big toes.
yoga pose TriangleStart in Mountain. Left leg back at right angle to right foot. Right foot in line with middle of left foot. Hips facing front. Right thigh facing front. Lift arms to shoulder height. Drop shoulder blades. Extend through arms. Extend over right leg. Bring right hand to ground. Extend left arm up. Look up. Repeat on other side.
Benefits: Heart opener. Soothes sciatic nerve. Strengthens legs.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/Wc_9ZMDiOjk?start=259
Modifications: A) Half triangle (hand on thigh instead of mat). B) Hand on block. C) Hand on chair. D) Bring raised arm over the ear parallel to floor. E) Lower hand grasps big toe with middle and index fingers. F) Wrap eft arm behind back and take hold of inner right thigh with left hand. G) Hover hand just above the mat. H) Look at mat instead of ceiling.
yoga pose Standing Forward BendBend knees slightly. Fold forward from waste. Hold onto back of feet, shins or legs. Release head down. Back of neck soft.
Alternatives: Tabletop. Gorilla.
Benefits: Stretch back, hams. Improves posture.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/hrp6Q_QyDkc?rel=0
Modifications: Bent knees. Loop fingers around big toes.
yoga pose Low LungeStart in Downward Facing Dog. Step right foot forward, between hands. Lower left knee to floor, sliding foot back until you feel a nice stretch in left hip and thigh. Keep hips low and level with each other. Place hands on thigh (or lift chest away from thigh, sweeping arms up alongside ears).Look straight ahead. Lower hands and step back to Downward Facing Dog.
Benefits: Stretches legs, groin, and hip flexors. Strengthens thighs and buttocks.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/R5zeuZuA8T4?rel=0
Modifications: A) Move between forward leg being bent and straight. B) Lower back knee to the mat. C) Face a wall (press big toe of front foot against a wall and bring fingertips to the wall). D) Low lunge twist (bend back knee and reach for foot or ankle with opposite hand). E) Side lunge.
Precautions : Knee injury.
yoga pose Down DogLift buttocks upwards and backwards. Lengthen spine. Press down through heels. Spread fingers - rotate shoulders externally, armpits towards Center. Tuck chin in. Look at feet. Release jaw.
Alternatives: Dolphin.
Benefits: Stretches spine, hams, shoulders. Calms nervous system.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/ayRU3ecmPbI?rel=0
Modifications: Use wall. Head on block. Leg up. Arm up. Wide stance.
Precautions : Pregnant. HBP. Headache.
yoga pose Low LungeStart in Downward Facing Dog. Step right foot forward, between hands. Lower left knee to floor, sliding foot back until you feel a nice stretch in left hip and thigh. Keep hips low and level with each other. Place hands on thigh (or lift chest away from thigh, sweeping arms up alongside ears).Look straight ahead. Lower hands and step back to Downward Facing Dog.
Benefits: Stretches legs, groin, and hip flexors. Strengthens thighs and buttocks.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/R5zeuZuA8T4?rel=0
Modifications: A) Move between forward leg being bent and straight. B) Lower back knee to the mat. C) Face a wall (press big toe of front foot against a wall and bring fingertips to the wall). D) Low lunge twist (bend back knee and reach for foot or ankle with opposite hand). E) Side lunge.
Precautions : Knee injury.
yoga pose Downward Facing Dog Leg UpFrom Downward Facing Dog try as many variations as you can: Lift left leg. Lift right leg. Lift left hand. Lift right hand. Lift left leg and right hand. Lift right leg and left hand. Wag your doggie tail. Widen stance. Come up onto toes. Bend knees.
Alternatives: Dolphin.
Benefits: Fun.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/ayRU3ecmPbI?rel=0
Modifications: A) Use wall. B) Head on block. C) Leg up. D) Arm up. E) Wide stance.
Precautions : Pregnant.
yoga pose Standing Forward BendBend knees slightly. Fold forward from waste. Hold onto back of feet, shins or legs. Release head down. Back of neck soft.
Alternatives: Tabletop. Gorilla.
Benefits: Stretch back, hams. Improves posture.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/hrp6Q_QyDkc?rel=0
Modifications: Bent knees. Loop fingers around big toes.
yoga pose Mountain Arms Raised IFeet hip width apart. Tuck chin in. Legs slightly bent. Shoulders back and down. Raise arms overhead.
Benefits: Improves posture. Strengthens legs and arms. Engages core.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/nwiyZSmfpWY?rel=0
Modifications: A) Standing twist. B) Standing arms overhead. C) Standing arms overhead with palms together. D) Samashthiti (feet together).
Precautions : Pregnant.
yoga pose End Of Sequence
yoga pose MountainFeet hip width apart. Tuck chin in. Legs slightly bent . Engage front of thighs, tuck tail bone. Shoulders back and down.
Alternatives: Samashthiti (feet together).
Benefits: Improves posture. Strengthens legs. Engages core.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/nwiyZSmfpWY?rel=0
Modifications: Hands in prayer behind back. Eyes closed.
Precautions : Pregnant.
yoga pose Standing Forward BendBend knees slightly. Fold forward from waste. Hold onto back of feet, shins or legs. Release head down. Back of neck soft.
Alternatives: Tabletop. Gorilla.
Benefits: Stretch back, hams. Improves posture.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/hrp6Q_QyDkc?rel=0
Modifications: Bent knees. Loop fingers around big toes.
yoga pose PlankDrop to hands and knees. Knees under hips. Hands under shoulders. Roll shoulders back and down. Finger tips point forward. Don't splay elbows. Lift up in your middle as you step one foot straight back and then the other. Keep legs engaged in supporting the plank position. Hold.
Alternatives: Dolphin.
Benefits: Strengthens arms, wrists, spine. Tones abs.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/pSWYGXSNjdE?rel=0
Modifications: Knees on floor.
Precautions : Carpal tunnel syndrome
yoga pose CobraLie face down. Feet together. Toes pointing behind. Hands flat on the floor by the rib cage. Lift chest. Gaze forward.
Alternatives: Sphinx. Crocodile.
Benefits: Supple spine. Strengthen palms, wrists, toes.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/zgvolE4NAH0
Modifications: A) Cobra with a folded blanket under hips. B) Cobra with one leg raised. C) Cobra with two legs raised. D) Cobra with one arm raised in front. E) Cobra with two arms raised in front. F) Cobra with one arm raised to the side. G) Cobra with two arms raised to the side. H) Cobra on elbows. I) Cobra with both hands behind the head. J) Revolved cobra. K) Striking cobra (extended child to cobra). L) Chair cobra (seated backbend). M) Baby cobra (don’t lift chest all the way up).
Precautions : Pregnancy. CTS. Back injury.
yoga pose ChildSit on heels. Exhale, lower torso onto thighs releasing neck and head until forehead touches floor. Arms alongside legs. Keep buttocks in contact with heels.
Benefits: Stretches hips, thighs, ankles. Relieves back pain.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/DsXNXMoerMc?rel=0
Modifications: Interlock fingers behind back. Have a block under the forehead.
Precautions : Pregnancy. Knee injury.
yoga pose Upward Facing DogLie on tummy. Tops of feet on floor. Bend elbows. Spread palms on floor beside waist. Press hands into floor and slightly backwards (as if trying to push yourself forward along floor). Straighten arms to lift torso and legs. Thighs firm. Buttocks soft. Look straight ahead.
Alternatives: Cobra. Sphinx. Crocodile.
Benefits: Strengthens spine, arms, wrists. Stretches shoulders.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/IVavcaTyQ-Y?rel=0
Modifications: A) Blanket under hips. B) Tip head back slightly. C) One leg raised. D) Both legs raised.
Precautions : Back injury. CTS. Pregnancy.
yoga pose Down DogStart in Mountain. Forward bend. Step feet back one at time. Lift buttocks. Lengthen spine. Press down through heels. Rotate shoulders externally - roll armpits to face inwards. Tuck chin in. Look at feet. Release jaw.
Alternatives: Dolphin.
Benefits: Stretches spine, hams, shoulders. Calms nervous system.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/ayRU3ecmPbI?rel=0
Modifications: Use wall. Head on block. Leg up. Arm up. Wide stance.
Precautions : Pregnant. HBP. Headache.
yoga pose Standing Forward BendBend knees slightly. Fold forward from waste. Hold onto back of feet, shins or legs. Release head down. Back of neck soft.
Alternatives: Tabletop. Gorilla.
Benefits: Stretch back, hams. Improves posture.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/hrp6Q_QyDkc?rel=0
Modifications: Bent knees. Loop fingers around big toes.
yoga pose End Of Sequence
yoga pose MountainFeet hip width apart. Tuck chin in. Legs slightly bent . Engage front of thighs, tuck tail bone. Shoulders back and down.
Alternatives: Samashthiti (feet together).
Benefits: Improves posture. Strengthens legs. Engages core.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/nwiyZSmfpWY?rel=0
Modifications: Hands in prayer behind back. Eyes closed.
Precautions : Pregnant.
yoga pose Warrior IFrom Triange stance - turn to face top of mat with front foot facing forward - back foot at right angle - adjust feet for stability - {train tracks}. Press into outside edge of back foot. Bend forward knee (stop above ankle). Body weight centred. Arms overhead. Switch sides.
Alternatives: Warrior II, III
Benefits: Stretches chest, shoulders, abs. Strengthens arms.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/4hqmLOpkHrw?rel=0
Modifications: Back heel on folded blanket.
Precautions : HBP. Shoulder injury.
yoga pose Warrior IIStart in Mountain. Step feet wide apart. Raise arms parallel to floor. Palms down. Turn right foot in to right. Left foot at 90 degrees. Align left heel with right heel. Bend left knee over left ankle. Stretch arms parallel to floor. Turn head to look over fingers. Repeat on other side.
Alternatives: Warrior I, III
Benefits: Stretches groin, chest, shoulders, and abdominals. Relieves backache.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/4Ejz7IgODlU?rel=0
Modifications: A) High lunge with arms overhead. B) High lunge with backbend. C) High lunge with arms forward. D) High lunge with blocks under hands. E) High lunge with hands on hips. F) Block under back foot. G) Raise back heel on a folded blanket.
Precautions : High blood pressure. Shoulder injury.
yoga pose Warrior IIIFrom Mountain take a big step forward with right foot. Shift weight onto right leg. Raise arms overhead. Interlace fingers. Lift left leg. Gaze at a point on floor. Repeat on other side.
Alternatives: Warrior I & II
Benefits: Strengthens legs, shoulders, back. Tones abdominals. Balance.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/4PjcQJjOvBc?rel=0
Modifications: A) Arms out to sides. B) Arms back. C) Hands on blocks. D) Hands on wall. E) Hands on back of chair.
Precautions : High blood pressure.
yoga pose MountainStand with feet hip-width apart. Tuck chin in. Legs slightly bent. Shoulders back and down.
Benefits: Improves posture and concentration. Strengthens legs. Engages core. Strengthens your thighs, knees, and ankles. Firms your abdomen and buttocks. Relieves sciatica. Reduces flat feet.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/nwiyZSmfpWY?rel=0
Modifications: A) Palms together in prayer mudra behind the back. B) Hands raised over your head. C) Eyes closed. D) Samashthiti (feet together). E) Feet hip-distance apart. F) Rock gently back and forth and side to side. G) Block between the thighs. H) Palms together in front of the chest in prayer mudra. I) Interlace fingers and extend arms straight in front of you (shoulder stretch). 
Precautions : Avoid locking the knees out (allow your knees to soften).
yoga pose SquatStand upright with back straight. Feet shoulder width apart. Feet at 45 degrees. Bend knees. Squat as if you are about to sit on an invisible chair.
Alternatives: Horse pose.
Benefits: Hip opener. Strengthens thighs, buttocks, hamstrings.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/IXpJEqssze8
Modifications: A) Sit on the front edge of a chair. B) Folded blanket under heels. C) Lift all ten toes up. D) Bring arms to tops of legs and reach outward. E) Sit back against a wall like you are in a chair. F) Add a twist. G) Sit on a block. H) Roll a blanket and place it in the crease of both knees.
Precautions : Knee injury.
yoga pose Squat JumpsStand in mountain pose. Widen stance and splay feet open a bit. Squat down with feet shoulder width apart. Instead of slowly rising as with a traditional squat, jump into the air with core engaged and land in a squat position. Repeat.
Benefits: Build strength, power, endurance.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/7jLdLqA4Hrw
Modifications: A) Sit on the front edge of a chair. B) Folded blanket under heels. C) Lift all ten toes up. D) Bring arms to tops of legs and reach outward. E) Sit back against a wall like you are in a chair. F) Add a twist. G) Sit on a block. H) Roll a blanket and place it in the crease of both knees.
Precautions : Knee injury.
yoga pose Wide Leg Forward BendStart in Mountain. Widen legs. Hands on hips. Fold forward from hips into Forward Bend. Release torso down on exhale. Hands to floor. Walk feet wider apart. Release head. Lengthen legs on inhale. Release torso on exhale. To release bring hands to hips and lift up.
Benefits: Strengthens and stretches legs, spine. Tones abs.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/gYeXUJdUsxg?rel=0
Modifications: Raise hands on block.
Precautions : Low back injury.
yoga pose Goddess TwistStand tall. Arms by sides. Step feet out wide. Turn toes out slightly. Bend knees and lower hips into a squat. Thighs parallel to floor, but not into a deep squat. Tuck tailbone. Press hips forwards. Draw thighs back. Knees in line with toes. Soften shoulders. Gaze softly. Hands on thighs. Twist upper body to right. Gaze behind shoulder. Hold. Switch.
Benefits: Hip & chest opener. Strengthens thighs, buttocks, hamstrings. Ease back pain. Detoxify body. Stimulate digestion & circulation.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/wgXefCprLm0
Modifications: A) If squat is difficult sit on front edge of chair. B) Come onto tiptoes. C) Hands resting on thighs in Aakash Mudra (join and press tip of third finger with a tip of thumb). D) Raise up on toes and cross arms. Gaze down at mat. E) Goddess with a twist. F) Back against a wall. G) Gentle Goddess (don't lower into full squat). H) Raise arms overhead. I) Raise arms parallel to the mat with palms facing away and fingers pointed up. J) Goddess pose with eagle arms (arms interlocked).
Precautions : Knee, leg or shoulder injury.
yoga pose Wide Leg Forward BendStart in Mountain. Widen legs. Hands on hips. Fold forward from hips into Forward Bend. Release torso down on exhale. Hands to floor. Walk feet wider apart. Release head. Lengthen legs on inhale. Release torso on exhale. To release bring hands to hips and lift up.
Benefits: Strengthens and stretches legs, spine. Tones abs.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/gYeXUJdUsxg?rel=0
Modifications: Raise hands on block.
Precautions : Low back injury.
yoga pose PlankDrop to hands and knees. Knees under hips. Hands under shoulders. Roll shoulders back and down. Finger tips point forward. Don't splay elbows. Lift up in your middle as you step one foot straight back and then the other. Keep legs engaged in supporting the plank position. Hold.
Alternatives: Dolphin.
Benefits: Strengthens arms, wrists, spine. Tones abs.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/pSWYGXSNjdE?rel=0
Modifications: Knees on floor.
Precautions : Carpal tunnel syndrome
yoga pose Extended ChildOn all fours. Wrists below shoulders. Knees under hips. Use hands to walk forward and lower chest to floor. Drop buttocks until they reach halfway to feet. Arms straight. Forehead touches floor. Push hips back and stretch spine.
Benefits: Stretches arms, shoulders, spine, hips.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/eqVMAPM00DM
Modifications: A) Interlock fingers behind back. B) Knees together (instead of separated). C) Curl the toes under (instead of flat). D) Place a rolled towel under your shins (take the stress off of your ankles). E) Place a yoga blanket underneath the knees for padding. F) Place a folded towel underneath the knees for padding. G) Place a bolster or pillow under your stomach or chest and stay for up 10 minutes. H) Go deeper into the hip stretch by spreading your knees wider.
Precautions : Knee injury.
yoga pose End Of Sequence
yoga pose Supine Leg LiftLie in a supine with knees bent. Slowly raise left leg to ceiling (keep foot flexed). Repeat on right leg.
Benefits: Strengthens legs and core muscles.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/hfxg31WuIi8
Modifications: Blanket under head.
yoga pose Lying TwistLie on back. Raise right leg up and roll it over to left side (foot touches floor). Spread legs wide. Put left hand on right thigh for leverage. Switch sides.
Benefits: Releases lower back. Opens tight shoulders. Improves digestion. Quiet Mind. Eases sciatic pain.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/Tl9scRUR95g
Modifications: Lift head up.
yoga pose Knees To ChestLie on back. Legs and arms extended. Both knees to chest. Clasp hands around knees. Wrap forearms over shins. Clasp each elbow with opposite hand. Keep back flat on mat. Release shoulder blades down toward waist. Draw tailbone and sacrum down. Lengthening spine. Softly rock backward and forward or side-to-side for a spinal massage. Tuck chin slightly. Gaze down. Hold. Release.
Benefits: Massages spin. Lower back stretch. Good for posture. Relieves tired legs. Strengthens back. Firms abdominals. Strengthens legs and hips. Cures joint pains. Improves blood circulation in legs.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/TVk4ht8V8J8
Modifications: Knee to chest.
yoga pose End Of Sequence
yoga pose Still Breath MeditationRelaxation - "When the breath is irregular, the mind is also unsteady; but when the breath is still, so is the mind."
Alternatives: Hero. Perfect. Lotus.
Benefits: Awareness of breath.
Modifications: Folded blanket under buttocks.
yoga pose SavasanaLie on back with legs and arms apart. Feet to side, palms up. Release lower back to floor. Close eyes. Abdomen rises on inhale and falls on exhale. Feel heavy with each exhalation.
Alternatives: Crocodile. Child.
Benefits: Tune into body. Calm. Tranquil. Inner Peace. Clarity.
Video: https://www.youtube.com/embed/YBe1nzunHJ0
Modifications: Knees bent. Blanket under knees. Blanket under head. Supine star (legs & arms spread out).

Yoga has both preventative and therapeutic benefits. It has been shown to offer physical and mental benefits to the body and the mind.

The many physical benefits of hatha yoga are: it improves flexibility and joint muscle mobility; strengthens, tones, and builds muscles; corrects posture; strengthens the spine; eases back pain; improves muscular-skeletal conditions such as bad knees, tight shoulders and neck, swayback and scoliosis; increases stamina; creates balance and grace; stimulates the glands of the endocrine system; improves digestion and elimination; increases circulation; improves heart conditions; improves breathing disorders; boosts immune response; decreases cholesterol and blood sugar levels and encourages weight loss.

The mental benefits include: it increases body awareness; relieves chronic stress patterns in the body; refreshes the body by relieving muscle strain; relaxes the mind and body; centres attention; sharpens concentration, and frees the spirit.

Western doctors and scientists are discovering additional health benefits of hatha yoga. Studies have shown that it can relieve the symptoms of several common and potentially life-threatening illnesses; such as arthritis, arteriosclerosis, chronic fatigue, diabetes, AIDS, asthma and obesity. Many believe it even fends off the ravages of old age.

A near-perfect fitness routine, hatha yoga provides the means for people of any age not only to get and stay in shape but also to develop balance, coordination, and grounding. It renews, invigorates, and heals the body - stretching and toning the muscles, joints, and spine and directing blood and oxygen to the internal organs (including the glands and nerves).

Yoga is distinctly different from other kinds of exercise. It generates motion without causing strain and imbalances in the body. When practised correctly, hatha yoga has no such negative effects on either the inner or outer body.

When done with dedication and purpose, hatha yoga can be a quite demanding, yet immensely rewarding type of exercise. While not inherently aerobic, it involves almost every muscle in the body and challenges the body to work differently and often more passively. Since the limbs function as free weights, resistance is created by moving the body's centre of gravity. This strengthening gives way to endurance as poses are held for longer periods of time.

Unlike conventional forms of exercise, such as weight training, walking, biking or hiking, hatha yoga stresses quality of movement over quantity. A consistent hatha yoga practice can quiet the mind and refresh the body, bringing health, relaxation, and happiness.