Yoga Treats: A series of short "treats" for your body and mind. The power of yoga without all the time. I will walk you through one short "treat" in each post so check back frequently and let me know how you like each one and how it works for you. These can be performed by men, women, and kids!
My friends will frequently comment, “You think yoga will fix everything!” Well, maybe not everything . . . but very close! When you think about what is good for your body and how you should “treat” it, yoga benefits most challenges to our health. From stretching, to moving, to strength training, to relaxing, to focusing our minds over our bodies . . . yoga provides great benefits. And, you do not have to commit to a full hour practice to get some of those benefits.
Yoga Treats are just that . . . treats for your body and your mind. When you start getting tired or need to refocus or calm down, yoga can help. Remember, this is all about you! There is no competition, no expectations, no judgement. These are treats for your body and how it feels today! So here we go . . .
Treat One: Deep Breathing. Have you ever heard or used the phrase with a child, “take a deep breath” to help calm down? That’s because deep breathing does just that. It helps calm the nervous system and therefore your mind and body. When starting a yoga practice, if all you do is breathe deeply and focus on your breath . . . you would be well on your way to appreciating the benefits of yoga.
To begin a deep breathing exercise, close your eyes and mouth. Sit up straight and tall. Inhale through your nose and feel your chest expand. Breathing through your nose warms and filters the air and helps us to breathe more slowly. When your lungs are filled, pause, then exhale slowly. Exhale the entire breath so you can feel it all the way down into your belly pulling your navel into your spine. Pause and inhale slowly again. With each breath, expand your lungs and chest even more, filling your lungs as full as you can, reaching your chest up to the sky. On each exhale, expel as much air as you can from your lungs all the way down to your belly. Close your eyes and listen to and feel your breath. See if you can work up to a count of 8 on the inhale, hold for a count of 4, exhale for a count of 8, hold for a count of 4, inhale, hold, exhale, hold. Start slowly and see if you can work up to a full 10 inhales and exhales.
A simple treat for your body today . . . and no one knows how to treat your body like you know how to treat your body today.