3 Yoga Poses That Everyone Needs
By Genevieve Cunningham
Not everyone is into yoga. For some, it's the perfect exercise. It's gentle, yet challenging. It's easily modified, and it's fun. For others, yoga just isn't it. It's too slow and too mentally taxing. But whether you enjoy yoga or not, there's no doubt that it can bring massive benefits into your life -- both physical and mental. Luckily for those who aren't keen on spending time on the mat, there are a few yoga poses that you can do and really benefit from -- even if you don't want to maintain a formal practice. If you're looking for a way to boost body and mind, take a look at these three yoga poses from which everyone can benefit.
Forward fold is done by standing with feet a little closer than shoulder width apart, bending at the waist, and allowing your hands, arms, and neck to hang without stress. In essence, it's a toe touch stretch. You'll straighten the knees as much as possible and hold the position while your hamstrings get a good, deep stretch. This is a great pose because sitting -- which is an epidemic in our modern world -- helps create extremely tight hamstrings for most people. If you stick with this move, you'll improve flexibility in your legs and reduce pain in the lower half of your body.
Most people already know about plank. You may not have known it was a yoga pose, but you've probably tried it for yourself. Plank is one of the best exercises for the core. It requires every muscle in your body to tighten all at once, and the abdomen and back muscles get the most work. If you're looking to build your core or develop overall strength, you need plank in your routine starting now.
Here's the thing about mountain pose: It's basically just standing there. But you'll be standing with such incredible posture that it's really good for your body and mind. You'll have your feet shoulder width apart. You'll put your palms facing forward. You'll drop your shoulders and pull your belly button toward the spine. Then you'll just stand there and breathe deeply. The real power of this pose isn't during your workout, but rather the improvement in posture that it's likely to bring to everyday life.
You don't have to be a top-notch yogi to gain the benefits of yoga. Just add these simple but powerful poses into your everyday exercise routine. You may find that even a few poses per day can change your posture, your muscle strength, and your overall body composition for better health moving forward.
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Chapel Hill, N.C.