With COVID numbers starting to rise again, I thought now might be a great time to share a few restorative yoga poses that will help you slow down and ease any anxiety or stress that shows up in the coming months. Not to mention, winter is on its way, and what better way to spend a cozy snowy winter day than laying around with blankets and bolsters? 

Here are 4 of my favorite restorative yoga poses to decrease stress and anxiety and to cozy up in and relax. Make sure to also head over here for a Spotify playlist to accompany this cozy, stress-reducing, restorative yoga practice!

Bananasana ~ 2-3 min. per side

Lay on your back and walk your legs and feet over to the right to start. Bring your arms above your head and walk them over to the right as well, creating a crescent shape in your body, or a banana, curved shape. 

If you’d like you can hold onto opposite elbows here, but if that doesn’t feel great on your shoulders then don’t worry about it.

Breath fully into the left side of your ribs – the side that has the big curve to it. Imagine you could expand each muscle in between each of the ribs of the rib cage with your inhales.

Repeat on your left side.

Modification for Shoulder Discomfort:

A lot of people don’t feel great with their arms over their heads in this way, so if this doesn’t feel great to you, try bending your elbows. If this still doesn’t feel great you can skip the arms, and just have the curve of your torso and your legs and that will be totally fine.

Child’s Pose Hugging a Bolster ~ 2-3 min.

Grab 2 yoga blocks and stack them like so:

Lay your bolster over the yoga blocks like so:

Widen your knees and come into a child’s pose with your torso laying on your bolster. Rest your head in whatever comfortable position you’d like and place your arms somewhere comfortable.

Supta Baddhokonasana ~ 10-20 min.

Grab your yoga blocks and put them in the same position as you did for the Child’s pose, and put your bolster on top in the same position.

If you have more than 2 yoga blocks, grab them – the more props for this the better the experience.

If you have a blanket you can fold it up and place it at the top like a pillow for your head like so:

Lay yourself back on the bolster. Bring your feet together and let your knees drop wide.

For a more supported prop-heavy setup:

Take 1 block under each knee or thigh on whatever height feels supportive and easeful. Try to take any effort out of the pose.

Grab a blanket and cozy up! If you have an eye pillow or an eye mask, this is the time to use it. 

Savasana: 5-10 min

Lay on your back and if you’d like to grab your blanket as a pillow go for it – or you could grab an actual pillow. Take your bolster and slide it under your knees or your thighs. Try both and see what feels best for you – everyone is different, but I prefer a bolster under my thighs rather than my knees. Others prefer their knees.

Grab your eye pillow and another blanket and settle in. Drop your jaw, relax your tongue and your throat. Relax your shoulders and feel the weight of your lower back on the ground.

I hope this short but sweet restorative yoga practice was everything you wanted in life and more! If you want more restorative classes like this, where I guide you through the poses, head over here to try a free week in my online yoga studio. When you do your trial week you get access to the pre-recorded classes, as well as 1 FREE live group zoom yoga class (members get all of this plus 4 free zoom group classes a month). No credit card required.

As always if you have any questions or any requests for a blog post feel free to shoot me an email at kateformanyoga@gmail.com or you can drop me a comment below!

Till next time,

Kate

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