While doing this routine, focus on your deep breathing in through the nose and out through the nose. This slower breathing and control of the breath, research has shown, helps with the parasympathetic nervous system, your body’s ability to rest and digest, as well as the central nervous system.
Breathe in slowly through the nose as you fill your stomach up with air, and then exhale slowly as you feel your stomach deflate. In each yoga pose, focus on your breathing and the sensations you feel in your body.
Reclining big toe pose
This pose stretches the hamstrings, hips and calves in a relaxing and soothing way due to the reclined position.
Lie down on your back with your legs straight in front of you. Then bring the right knee into your chest, and place your hands behind the right thigh. Straighten the right leg up towards the ceiling. If you feel a stretch in your hamstring, stay here. If not, walk the hands up to the calf.
For an even deeper stretch, reach the right hand toward the right foot and grab onto the right big toe with the thumb, index and middle fingers.
Flex your foot and feel a stretch behind the back of the leg. Relax the shoulder of your right arm and make sure that your low back stays on the bed. Hold for three breaths. Repeat on the other side.
This pose is especially helpful for loosening up the hip flexors which become constricted from sitting at a desk or in cramped positions all day.
From your hands and knees, step your right foot to the outside of your right hand. Keep the right knee bent over the right ankle. If you’re more flexible, you can step the right foot out to the right a bit more and open the foot to the right. Place your hands inside of the right foot, and hold here.
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