Let’s be honest – these days we often wake up after a fitful night’s sleep with our eyebrows already furrowed and our teeth grinding. The anxiety of what new developments happened overnight is enough for even the most optimistic among us to crawl back under the blankets.
On the mornings that are particularly challenging to get out of bed and start your day, spending a few minutes moving your body and minding your breath before your feet hit the floor may change your mood and set a positive tone for the whole day.
Here are some easy, accessible poses you can do right from your bed. You can linger in postures longer if you have the time, or move through the poses more rapidly if you are in a hurry. The most important part? Long, deep inhales to get that prana (life energy) into your body and brain.
- Lying Breath: In a comfortable position, inhale through your nose and fill yourself from bottom to top. Pause. Exhale very slowly through your nose. Pause. Repeat several times.
- Reclined Twist: Bring your left knee toward your chest and hold it with the right hand. Exhale and twist your knee across your body to the right, left arm extended to the left. Hold the twist for about 3 breaths.
- Hamstring Stretch: Extend one leg up toward the ceiling, holding it near the calf. Bend and straighten it a few times and then reach the heel toward the ceiling. Hold and breathe. Repeat on the other side.
- Seated Forward Fold: Sit up and extend your legs long. Inhale and sit up tall. Exhale and reach forward toward your toes. Allow your spine to round and your head to drop. Breathe.
- Cross Leg Fold: Sit with your legs crossed and gently fold forward, resting your forehead on your hands or a pillow. Hold fo a few breaths. Inhale to sit back up. Switch which leg is on top and repeat.
- Puppy Pose: From hands and knees, walk your hands forward as far as you can, keeping your tail up. Let your heart drop toward the mattress and rest your forehead on the bed (or a pillow).
- Pigeon Pose: From hands and knees, Move your right foot towards the outside of your left hip, then lower your torso towards that knee while straightening your opposite leg behind you. Rest your head on the backs of your hands. Take a few breaths and then switch sides.
- Figure 4: Move close to your bed’s headboard and rest your right foot there, so your right leg is bent at a 90degree angle. Cross your left ankle across your right thigh, just above the knee. Press your left knee away fro your body. Breathe and hold. Change sides.
- Frog: Starting on all fours, spread your knees wider than your hips and turn your feet out. Lower to your elbows, and maybe let your chest rest on the mattress. Breathe.
- Eagle Arms: Sit tall. Cross your right arm under your left and twist together so that your palms meet (if not accessible, keep elbows crossed and hold opposite shoulders with hands). Drop shoulders and lift elbows to shoulder height. Breathe and hold. Mindfully release and switch sides.