• How to do Vashistasana (Side Plank)

    Vashistasana, or the Side Plank Pose, is a powerful pose that strengthens the entire body and especially works on strengthening your core. Asymmetrical poses like this are excellent for discovering which side of your body is weaker than the other and for building symmetrical strength.

    Despite how challenging this pose looks, it can be performed by almost anyone with some practice.

    Before looking at how to do the pose, let’s look at the benefits and contraindications.

    Benefits of vashistasana

    • Improves your posture and balance
    • Strengthens your core, arms, wrists, legs and glutes
    • Increases muscle tone in the body
    • Helps to improve circulation throughout the body

    Contraindications of vashistasana

    • Wrist or shoulder injuries
    • High blood pressure
    • Pregnancy (after the first trimester)

    How to do side plank

    Now let’s take a look at how to do this pose. Here are step-by-step instructions:

    Begin in plank pose. Walk your right hand a little bit forward and shift your weight onto your right side.

    Rotate your leg so you are on the outer edge of your right foot and your legs are stacked on top of each other.

    Bring your left arm up towards the sky and stack it on top of your right arm so that both arms are parallel to each other.

    Lift through your hips and press your feet firmly into the ground.

    Engage your core muscles and keep your head in line with your spine, looking straight ahead or slightly up at the ceiling.

    If this is difficult for you and you feel unstable, stay here. If you feel like you are ready, you can raise your left foot.

    To do so, externally rotate your left hip joint and raise your leg.

    Grab your big toe with your left hand.

    Hold for 5-10 breaths and slowly come out of the pose.

    Repeat the same steps on the other side.

    That’s how you do vashistasana! With a little practice, this pose can become an integral part of your yoga practice, helping to bring strength and balance to your body and mind.

    Watch the classes below with Kino for more detail about how to do the pose.

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  • How to do Pigeon Pose

    Do you want to learn how to do pigeon pose? This popular yoga pose can provide a number of benefits for your body and mind. It is a great way to stretch your hips, thighs, and groin. Pigeon pose is also known for its ability to relieve tension in the lower back and calm the mind. In this blog post, we will give you a step-by-step guide on how to do pigeon pose safely and effectively.

    Benefits of pigeon pose

    There are many benefits that you can experience from doing this pose. Here are some of the most notable ones:

    • Stretches the hips, thighs, and groin
    • Releases tension in the lower back
    • Calms the mind
    • Improves digestion
    • Stimulates the appetite

    Contraindications

    There are a few contraindications that you should be aware of before doing this pose. If you have any of the following conditions, it is best to avoid this yoga pose:

    • Pregnancy
    • Knee injuries
    • Lower back injuries
    • Shoulder injuries

    Step-by-step guide on how to do pigeon pose

    Now that you know the benefits and contraindications let’s get into the step-by-step guide. Here is what you need to do:

    From plank pose, step the right leg forward. Place your right knee on the mat behind your right hand. Turn the shin bone parallel to the top of your mat. Your right ankle is behind your left hand. Your right hip is externally rotated. The right foot is flexed.

    Your left leg is stretched out behind you with the left toes pointed and the top of the left foot on the ground.

    Sit up and settle into your hips. Keep them even. Don’t tip to one side or the other. Try to keep your pelvis square.

    If your hips are too far off the ground because your hips are tight, you can put a block under the right side of the pelvis for added support.

    Fold your upper body over your right leg and breathe deeply.

    Hold this position for 30 seconds to 1 minute.

    Repeat on the other side.

    Now that you know how to do the pose, you can practice it on your own.

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  • How to do Halasana (Plow Pose)

    Do you want to learn how to do halasana (plow pose)? Then you’ve come to the right place.

    Halasana is part of the closing sequence in Ashtanga yoga. The posture is about relaxation and turning your energy inward. It is a posture that is about self-reflection more than striving and achieving.

    When you attempt the plow pose you might find yourself rounding your back to achieve the pose, but instead of rounding the back you want your hips to be lifted.

    Practicing halasana offers a host of benefits, such as improved circulation and increased energy.

    We will provide step-by-step instructions on how to do this pose, as well as discuss the contraindications for doing it. So, if you are interested in learning this pose, keep reading!

    Benefits of halasana

    • Stretches the spine and neck
    • Improves flexibility
    • Stimulates the abdominal organs
    • Reduces stress and fatigue

    Contraindications

    • Neck injuries
    • High blood pressure
    • Glaucoma

    How to do halasana

    Lie down on your back

    Place your palms on the floor beside you with your fingertips pointing toward your feet.

    Inhale and use your abdominal muscles to lift your legs off the floor so they are perpendicular to your torso. Your feet are pointing toward the ceiling. Take a moment here to make sure your pelvis is aligned and to activate the muscles in your pelvic floor and core.

    Place your palms on the ground at your sides and continue to lift your legs and pelvis, bringing your legs over your head. Your toes should touch the ground over your head.

    If you can’t touch your toes to the ground, bring your hands up to support your low back.

    If your toes touch the ground, interlace your fingers and press your shoulders into the ground to help you lift up through the hips. Try not to round your back.

    Don’t press your neck into the floor. There should be space between your neck and the floor.

    Hold this posture for about 8 breaths before slowly coming out of it.

    Watch this video with Kino for more details about how to do this pose.

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  • How to do Supported Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclining Bound Angle Pose)

    Do you want to learn how to do a supported supta baddha konasana? This is a great yoga pose for beginners. It is a relaxing and restorative pose that can help relieve stress and tension. In this blog post, we will show you how to do the pose step by step. We will also discuss the benefits and contraindications of the pose.

    Benefits of supta baddha konasana

    There are many benefits of supta baddha konasana, including:

    • Relieves stress and tension: This pose is very calming and relaxing. It can help to relieve stress and tension from the mind and body.
    • Stretches the inner thighs and groin: This pose helps to stretch the inner thighs and groin muscles.
    • Opens the hips: This pose helps to open up the hips and release any tightness in the hip area.
    • Improves digestion: This pose massages the digestive organs and can help to improve digestion.
    • Relieves back pain: This pose can help to relieve back pain by stretching the back muscles.

    Contraindications of supta baddha konasana

    There are a few contraindications to be aware of before doing this pose, including:

    If you have any injuries to the knees, hips, or back, please consult your doctor before doing this pose.  If you are pregnant, please consult your doctor before doing this pose.

    How to do Supported Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclining Bound Angle Pose)

    For this pose, you’ll need a bolster, a rolled-up blanket, and two yoga blocks to support you.

    To begin, sit up tall on your yoga mat with your legs straight out in front of you.

    Bend your knees and bring the soles of your feet together. Allow your knees to fall out to the sides. If they don’t touch the floor, place yoga blocks under your knees to support them.

    Place a bolster behind you. The bolster will support the length of your spine, so have one end of it close to your tailbone. The other end of it points behind you. Gently lay back on the bolster.

    You can place a rolled-up blanket or towel beneath your neck to support your head.

    Place your hands at your side or wherever they feel comfortable.

    Stay in this position for 5-10 minutes, breathing deeply and relaxing into the pose.

    In conclusion, the supported supta baddha konasana is a great yoga pose for beginners. It is a relaxing and restorative pose that can help relieve stress and tension. This pose can also help to stretch the inner thighs and groin muscles, open up the hips, and improve digestion. If you have any injuries or medical conditions, please consult your doctor before doing this pose. Otherwise, give it a try and see how you feel!

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  • How to do Dandasana (Staff Pose)

    Do you want to learn how to do dandasana? This is a great pose for beginners because it is simple, yet effective. Dandasana strengthens the spine and helps improve posture. It also stimulates the abdominal organs and improves digestion. In this blog post, we will provide you with all the information you need to know about this pose, including step-by-step instructions on how to do it!

    Benefits of dandasana

    • Strengthens the spine
    • Improves posture
    • Stimulates the abdominal organs
    • Improves digestion

    Contraindications of dandasana

    If you have any injuries or conditions that affect your spine, please consult your doctor before doing this pose.

    How to do staff pose

    Sit on the ground with your legs extended in front of you. If tightness in your hamstrings or hips makes this difficult, you can elevate your hips by sitting on a folded blanket or pillow.

    Flex your feet, drawing your toes toward you.

    Engage the thighs, pulling the kneecaps up toward you without hyperextending the knees.

    Pull your navel up and in engaging the core and pelvic floor.

    Lift your chest and roll your shoulders back. Let your shoulder blades relax down the back.

    Place your palms on the ground next to your hips.

    Draw your chin toward the chest and gaze at the tip of the nose.

    Curl the corners of the mouth to create a soft smile.

    Hold for five breaths and slowly come out of the pose.

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  • How to do Supported Bridge Pose

    Do you feel stiff and tight in your hips? Then you need to know how to do supported bridge pose. This pose offers a host of benefits, including improved flexibility and range of motion, increased blood flow and better circulation, and relief from tension in the hips and lower back. Plus, it’s easy to do!

    Read on for step-by-step instructions on how to perform this pose safely and effectively, but first let’s look at the benefits and contraindications for the pose.

    Benefits of supported bridge pose

    The benefits of this pose include the following:

    • Improved flexibility and range of motion in the hips
    • Increased blood flow and circulation
    • Relief from tension in the hips and lower back

    Contraindications for supported bridge pose

    Pregnancy

    • High blood pressure
    • Glaucoma or other eye conditions
    • Neck injuries or pain

    How to do supported bridge pose

    Now that you know the benefits and contraindications of supported bridge pose, let’s look at how to do the pose.

    To begin, lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor.

    Then slowly raise your hips up off the floor and place a block under your sacrum (tailbone). You can use the block on the first or second position, but if you want it higher, use two blocks. One block in third position won’t give you enough stability in the pose.

    Once you feel stable, straighten your legs and let your arms relax at your sides.

    This is an amazing way to open the front of the hips. Once you’re in position, simply relax and breathe deeply for up to five minutes.

    To release the pose, remove the block and slowly lower your hips back down to the floor.

    And that’s how to do supported bridge pose! Give it a try next time you’re feeling stiff and tight in your hips. You’ll be amazed at how good it feels.

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  • How to do Urdhva Mukha Svanasana (Upward Facing Dog)

    Learning how to do urdhva mukha svanasana or upward facing dog is important because it is part of many vinyasa flows. It is a back-bending posture that you will return to again and again in your practice.  This posture brings you into spinal extension while lifting the thighs off of the ground. If you need help lifting up off the ground you can practice a modified up dog with blocks.

    Let’s look at the benefits and contraindications for the pose before practicing it.

    Benefits of urdhva mukha svanasana

    There are many benefits of upward facing dog. Here are a few:

    • Strengthen back muscles
    • Stretches and strengthens the wrists
    • Encourages articulation and length in the spine
    • Opens the chest
    • Stimulates the internal organs
    • Improves posture

    Contraindications for urdhva mukha svanasana

    Not everyone should practice this pose. Let’s look at the contraindications for upward facing dog.

    • Wrist injury
    • Carpal tunnel syndrome
    • Low back injuries
    • Shoulder problems

    If you are pregnant, you should avoid this pose.

    How to do urdhva mukha svanasana (Upward Facing Dog)

    Lay face down on your mat. Your legs are active and straight out behind you. Engage your quadriceps and lift your kneecaps off the ground.

    Suck your belly in and engage your core.

    Place your hands on the floor next to your body at the center of your ribcage. Your fingers are facing forward.

    Lift your chest up and squeeze your elbows in toward your body.

    Keep your pelvic floor and core strong as you inhale and lift your hips and thighs off the ground by straightening your elbows.

    Don’t squeeze into your back. Instead, lift the pelvis up and forward.

    Send the center of your chest up and forward.

    Keep your glutes relaxed.

    Watch this short tutorial with Kino to better understand how to do the posture.

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  • How to do Uttana Padasana (Raised Leg Pose)

    So you want to know how to do uttana padasana or raised leg pose. Well, you’ve come to the right place. In this post, you’ll learn about the benefits and contraindications of the pose, and you’ll get step-by-step instructions teaching you how to do raised leg pose. At the end of this post, there are video instructions you can follow.

    Some people find this pose to be very challenging, but understanding the alignment will make it more accessible to you. This posture combines strength and flexibility. You’ll be in a spinal extension with the arms and legs raised. While doing the pose the weight of your body should be distributed in your core. You’re not dumping weight into your head. Instead, you’ll be lifting through the chest and core.

    Before going into more detail about how to do raised leg pose, let’s look at its benefits and contraindications.

    Benefits of uttana padasana

    • Strengthens the spine
    • Improves spinal flexibility
    • Tones the abdominals
    • Strengthens the legs and hips
    • Stretches the shoulders
    • Boosts your energy

    Contraindications of uttana padasana

    Even though this pose has a lot of benefits, there are people who should be cautious when attempting it or even avoid it completely. Avoid this pose if you have:

    • Back pain or back injury
    • Neck problems
    • High or low blood pressure
    • Injury of the pelvis
    • Severe spondylitis

    You should also avoid the pose if you are pregnant.

    How to do Uttana Padasana (Raised Leg Pose)

    Lay down on your mat.

    Bend your elbows and lift through the core, arching your back and bringing your spine into extension.

    The top of your head is on the ground, so your neck is also in extension.

    Don’t dump weight into your head and neck. Instead, lift through the core to raise your spine off the floor.

    Suck in your belly and press your sitting bones into the ground.

    Inhale and lift your legs and arms. Lift all of your weight up and forward.

    Bring the palms of the hands together. Press the big toe mounds together. Internally rotate the thighs and press the elbows toward each other.

    Stay here for eight breaths. When you’re done, slowly exit the pose.

    Watch the video with Kino for more details.

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  • How to do Lolasana (Pendant Pose)

    Do you want to know how to do lolasana or pendant pose? In this pose we’ll show you how to do this powerful pose and tell you all about the benefits of practicing it.

    Lolasana is a pose that requires arm and core strength. If you are practicing Ashtanga yoga and need help learning how to jump through and jump back pendant pose is essential to mastering that skill.

    Strength comes with time and practice. Just because you can’t get into pendant pose now doesn’t mean you never will. It may take time to get that true feeling of lifting that comes with the pose.

    Before we look at how to do this powerful pose let’s look at the benefits and contraindications.

    Benefits of lolasana

    • Increases spinal flexibility
    • Increases hip flexibility
    • Strengthens the core
    • Strengthens the shoulders
    • Improves wrist flexibility
    • Helps improve focus

    Contraindication of lolasana

    You shouldn’t do this pose if you have the following conditions:

    • Hernia
    • Wrist injury
    • Shoulder injury

    You should also avoid this pose if you’re pregnant.

    How to do lolasana

    Sit on your mat with your legs folded beneath you.

    Put your hands on the ground next to you so your fingers are lined up with your knees. Your palms are on the ground with your fingers facing forward.

    Lean into your hands, bringing your shoulders forward.

    Lift your hips up and back.

    Squeeze your knees up into your chest and bring your feet up toward your glutes so you lift completely off the ground.

    Engage the core and press into the shoulders.

    If you have a hard time getting off the ground, you can use blocks to help yourself get more lift.

    Pendant pose requires strength. It takes practice to get off the ground, so keep trying. You learn more about lolosana in this class with Kino.

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  • How to do Anjaneyasana (Low Lunge)

    Do you want to learn how to do Anjaneyasana? Low lunge or crescent moon lunge is a great way to release the front of the hips and give a good stretch to your quads. This makes the posture great to practice if you are learning how to do front splits. It’s also excellent for opening up your hips after you’ve been sitting all day. The posture is one that you’ll come across often in yoga sequences, so whether or not you want to get into a front split eventually, it is still a good pose to be familiar with.

    Before we look at how to do the pose, let’s find out the benefits and the contraindications.

    Benefits of anjaneyasana

    Here are just some of the benefits of crescent lunge pose.

    Releases the hips

    • Opens the chest
    • Stretches quads and hamstrings
    • Stretches and strengthens core muscles
    • Heart opening
    • Strengthens the legs
    • Stretches the shoulders

    Contraindications for anjaneyasana

    There are some contraindications for crescent lunge. If you have these conditions, you should avoid the pose.

    • Knee injury
    • Hip injury
    • Groin injury
    • Low back problems
    • High blood pressure

    How to do anjaneyasana

    Starting from downward facing dog, step your right foot forward between your hands.

    Place the sole of your foot on the floor between your hands and bend your right knee to a 90 degree angle. Stack the knee over the ankle, so you’re in a runner’s lunge.

    Place the back knee on the ground with the foot pointing behind you.

    Square your hips and engage your core as you raise your torso up along the centerline of your body.

    Bring your hands together overhead and look up at the thumbs.

    Your legs and core should remain active in the pose. Your shoulders are down the back, and your ribcage is lifted.

    Stay here for 5 breaths before slowly coming out of the pose and repeating it on the other side.

    Watch this video with Adrian for more tips about how to do anjaneyasana.

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