If you follow some yoga sequence and you practice yoga for some time with a teacher, if you have read yoga books and manuals, if you have done online courses, you probably already know a good number of asana, the yoga postures. If you do an autonomous practice, even if it’s only a few minutes a day when you do not have a class, you may have wondered how to combine an asana sequence in the best way. Doing yoga with a good teacher, expert and certified, gives you the opportunity to practice very well studied sequence, you link in a certain way to obtain a specific result. But also doing yoga we alone can create balanced sequences, putting in correct succession the asana that we know so well.
We will return to this question with a series of articles dedicated to the combination of the asana in yoga sequence, but to start with we will see 8 fundamental tips to create a balanced hidden yoga sequence.
You may read also: 10 TIPS FOR PRACTICING YOGA AT HOME 2018
Define your goal a yoga sequence
- 1 Define your goal a yoga sequence
- 2 Focus your attention on yourself: listen and watch yourself! a yoga sequence
- 3 Think about the practical issues: how much and what time do you have available? Do not hurry!
- 4 Always start concentrating on the breath
- 5 The warm-up! yoga positions a yoga sequence
- 6 We enter the practice: the main asana of the yoga sequence
- 7 Remember to compensate a yoga sequence
- 8 Relax a yoga sequence
First of all, ask yourself with what intention you are prepared to perform this yoga session. Do you want to undo a physical tension, calm a small pain, improve the flexibility of your body? Do you want to obtain general well-being, in your physical form and your mental clarity? Do you want to relax and overcome stress? Do you want to sleep better tonight or do you want to start the day with energy?
Focus your attention on yourself: listen and watch yourself! a yoga sequence
“Where are you right now? Listen to yourself and your psychophysical conditions: what parts of your body are tense or sore? If you are tired after a hard day’s work, is your tiredness more physical or mental? Do you need to unblock your back and neck or feel that you have to work your legs? Or do you need to help your mind to calm down, to concentrate or make a choice? Remember, if you find yourself in particular conditions (first days of menstruation, pregnancy, post-accident …), do not head unconsciously into practice: consult with an expert and certified teacher, with a doctor or physiotherapist and ask them what you can do and what you should avoid.
Think about the practical issues: how much and what time do you have available? Do not hurry!
Have you reserved a space for yoga at the end of the day? Perhaps the ideal for you will be a yoga sequence to let go of the tensions and relax. Or do you want to do yoga in the morning? You can build yourself an energizing yoga sequence. What plans await you later? A yoga session in a class with a teacher usually lasts about 60 or 90 minutes or even two hours. But if you have less time, even 15 or 30 minutes may be enough to practice a good yoga sequence: the important thing is to live these minutes with presence and concentration, taste them! Do not hurry, and even if you do not have much time, always include a minute of final relaxation, especially if you lead a frantic life: it is essential.
Always start concentrating on the breath
To start any yoga sequence, enter the breath: it will help you to put aside the distractions, the tiredness of the day just spent or the rush to start the day you have ahead. It is not a matter of making a sophisticated technique of pranayama, but of consciously breathing: observe your breathing that comes in and out, inspires deeply and exhales slowly, while maintaining a resting position. You can practice conscious breathing while standing, in tadasana, or seated, as the easy position, or also stretched, in savasana. To limit useless movements and not do a continuous up-down, you can choose to start standing, stretched or sitting, depending on what you want to do in the next phase …
The warm-up! yoga positions a yoga sequence
Warming up in yoga is as important as in sports. It is necessary to prepare the body for practice by increasing the oxygen supply, the temperature, and the blood flow to the muscles and joints, thus reducing the pains, ramps or pulls a good yoga sequence. But the benefits are not only for the body: the warming positions increase the awareness of oneself and one’s body (yoga improves self-conception!), Favor concentration and mental presence. The heating asana is often dynamic, that is, they are composed of elongation, bending and bending movements. You can choose to perform them standing, sitting and stretching – in any case, avoid complicated positions or too heavy. Here are some examples of asana and warm-up exercises:
- standing heating asana: Tadasana (the mountain); uttanasana (forward bending); lengthening the arms and the spine upwards; rotation of the shoulders;
- heating asana on the floor: starting from savasana, elongation of arms, column, and neck; knees to the chest, to relax the back; extension of the legs; setubanda-asana (the bridge)
We enter the practice: the main asana of the yoga sequence
- You have entered the breath and you have done the warm-up, now is the time to dedicate yourself to the practice of the main asana of your yoga sequence. In the practice of Hatha Yoga, there is a kind of “classical formula” that is very practiced by teachers to compose their lessons. A balanced yoga sequence does not necessarily include all the passages of this formula, which is ideal for a practice of about an hour; in case you have less time, you can choose a shorter yoga sequence, for example without equilibrium positions or inverted positions, which are considered optional. Even so, this classic formula of the Hatha Yoga sequence is a very valid guide for creating your sequences. Here you have it:
- asana standing: for example tadasana, uttanasana, and triangles, virabhadrasana (the warrior); Ardha utkasana (the half-chair);
- equilibrium asana: vriksahana (the tree), variant 3 of virabhadrasana (the warrior);
- Asana working the abdominals: savasana (the boat); the so-called “yoga abdominals”, raising the legs at 30 °, 60 ° and 90 °;
- inverted asana: from the simplest postures with the legs raised on a chair or against the wall to the sailor the plow;
- backward bending: bhujungasana (the cobra), the Sphinx, shalabhasana (the lobster);
- forward bending: pachimottanasana (the clamp), Mahamudra;
- torsions: from simple seated twisting, Vajrayana, to marichiasana, to Katharina parivritti (supine torsion) and its variants
- yoga push-ups
Remember to compensate a yoga sequence
After the most difficult asanas, such as backward bending, twisting or reversing positions, practice a compensation posture. Even if you do not feel tired, be kind to your body and make up for it! The compensating asanas develop two main functions: they rebalance the tensions that can be created while practicing a complicated position (for example, after a backward flexion like the posture of the cobra it is useful to compensate the effort with a posture that stretches the back in another sense, like bhastrika, the bellows, or balasana, the child’s posture, and amplify the positive effects of the position that follows.Choose as a compensation asana a less complicated position than the one that has tired you.
Relax a yoga sequence
Always conclude the yoga sequence by dedicating a few minutes to relax. Sometimes it may seem that you can conclude the practice with the last asana of your sequence, especially if at that moment you do not feel tired: do not do it, put aside the haste and resist the temptation to conclude the practice ahead of time! The final relaxation helps you assimilate and integrate the effects of yoga. Put yourself in a position of relaxation as savasana (stretched on the floor) and dedicate at least the time of 6 long, deep and conscious breaths to rest. Listen and you will understand how much time you really need to relax. Also during the yoga sequence, after the more complicated asana and when you feel the need, take the time to rest and calm your breathing in a resting position.