Morning Yoga Poses to Help You Rise and Shine

By Hayley Townsend |

Feel better throughout your day with yoga poses that energize and refresh your muscles and mind.

One of the best things about yoga is the way it makes you feel. Whether it’s peace of mind, confidence, or feeling revitalized, it’s easy to notice the difference one yoga practice can make in your day. This routine is awesome for your mornings because it’s designed to help you feel calm, energized and ready to take on the day ahead.

All you need for this practice is some open space and a sturdy chair.

Start in Seated Mountain Pose.

Sit tall in your chair with your arms relaxed at your sides and palms facing forward. Plant your feet to the floor and try to lengthen your spine as you take deep inhalations and exhalations.

Warm up your muscles.

Next, draw your palms together in front of your heart. Then as you inhale, open your arms out wide. As you exhale, draw your hands together at heart-center. Breathe deeply through 3-5 chest expansions.

Bring warmth to your upper body with Elbow Rolls.

Next, bring your hands up to lightly touch your shoulders. Then, inhale and lift your elbows up. As you exhale, pull your elbows down again. Now, move into elbow rolls. Keep your hands on your shoulders and inhale as you slowly roll your elbows to the front and then back. Next, exhale and roll your elbows from the back to the front. Flow through 3-5 elbow rolls.

Progress to Standing Mountain Pose.

Place your hands on your lap and plant your feet to the floor to push yourself out of the chair and into a standing position. Stand tall with your spine straight and bring your hands together at heart-center. Next, keep your back straight and tall as you inhale and stretch your left arm up toward the sky and stretch your right arm down toward the ground. Then as you exhale, bring both hands together in front of your heart. Repeat the flow on the opposite side. Inhale and stretch your right arm up toward the sky and left arm down to the ground. Exhale and bring your hands together at heart-center. Repeat this sequence 3-5 times on each side.

Energize your hips and legs with active, flowing poses.

Stand beside your sturdy chair with your left arm resting on the chair for balance support and feet planted to the floor. Inhale and raise your right foot from the floor. Then, exhale and slowly send your right toes back to touch the floor behind you. Next, inhale and bring your right foot forward again. As you exhale, sweep your right leg out to the side. Take another deep inhalation, then sweep your right leg across your body toward the left side of the room. Finally, take a deep exhalation and plant your right foot to the floor again.

Stretch and refresh with Standing Downward Dog.

Stand beside your chair and face the chair. Then, lightly place your hands on the back of the chair. Slowly step your feet back and hinge forward to lengthen your spine and legs. Hold here for a few deep breaths. Next, keep the weight light on your chair as you step your feet toward the chair and return to standing.

Next, move to the other side of your chair and repeat the sequence of flowing poses on the opposite leg, then move into Standing Downward Dog once more.

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Complete your yoga practice with Standing Arch Pose.

Stand tall in front of your chair. Place both hands behind you as if you put your hands in your back pockets. Then, squeeze your shoulder blades together to lift your heart up. Take a couple of moments here to enjoy the deepest breaths you’ve taken today. Aim for a deep, energizing inhale, then a relaxing exhale. Finally, release and relax your arms down.

Anytime you need a little extra warmth and a dose of energy, use this flowing yoga practice to set you up for the day ahead. The best part is that you can also use yoga to get a better sleep. Close your day with these four gentle poses and sleep sound.

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