For many people, yoga means contouring your body to an unimaginable position and they believe that they will not be able to do it as they are not very flexible. However, you must do yoga and especially if you are not flexible because it will improve your posture and you will become flexible. Improved flexibility will lower the risk of injuries and back aches. You can improve your flexibility with several yoga stretches. These yoga stretches will not only make your more flexible but will also improve your sleep quality, strengthen muscles, make you calm, lower stress and improves concentration. So, here are some yoga stretches that you can practice even if you are not so flexible. (ALSO READ Best yoga poses for flat tummy: Practice these 5 yoga asanas to reduce belly fat).
1. Balasana (Child’s pose)
Balasana is an easy yoga asana and you can do it for a few minutes. It stretches your hips, thighs and ankles. It improves your nervous and lymphatic system as well as lower stress, backache and neck pain.
How to do it: Begin by kneeling down and sitting on your heels. Keep your hands on your side and now, bend forward until your chest touches your thighs. Try to touch your head on the floor in from of you but if you cannot, then place a pillow and rest your forehead on it. Hold this position for a couple of minutes and then return to the original position. Do this once.
2. Utkatasana (Chair pose)
This pose strengthens your thighs and stretches your body.
How to do it: Begin by standing straight with your feet 12 inches apart and your hands on the side. Now, lift up your hands above your head and lower your butt to sit in the squat position. Hold this position for a couple of minutes and return to the original position. Do this five times. (ALSO READ Increase height with yoga: 5 simple and effective yoga asanas to grow taller).
3. Tadasana (Mountain pose)
Tadasana or the mountain pose is a simple asana that stretches every muscle of your body. It allows you to pay attention to your breathing.
How to do it: Start by standing straight with your hands on your sides and feet together. Inhale and lift your arms above your head towards the sky. Slowly lift your heels and stand on your toes. Stretch your body. Hold this position for a couple of seconds and then return to the original position. Do this five to eight times.
4. Viparita karani (Legs-up-the-wall pose)
Viparita Karani or the legs-up-the-wall pose improves blood circulation and relaxes your body.
How to do it: Sit down with your legs extended in front of you and one side of your body touching a wall. Now lie down on your back and bring your legs up the wall with the soles facing up. Keep your butt slightly away from the wall. Keep your legs at 90 degrees with your body. Walk up the wall so that your hips are off the floor. Hold this position for a couple of minutes and then return to the original position. Do this five times. (ALSO READ Yoga asanas for hypertension: 5 yoga asanas to lower high blood pressure naturally).
5. Adho mukha svanasana (Downward-facing dog pose)
Adho mukha svanasana or the Downward-facing dog pose is one of the most popular yoga asanas. It stretches your body, clears your mind, improves your metabolism and strengthens your bones.
How to do it: Come to all fours and the lift up your hips to bring your body to an inverted ‘V’ position. Your hands and feet should be on the floor and keep your core engaged. Keep your hands shoulder width apart. Take deep breath and look towards your navel. Hold this position for about five to seven deep breaths and then return to the original position. Do this asana five times.
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