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10 yoga poses to help you feel focussed

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Now more than ever it’s important to prioritise your wellbeing, both physical and mental. These articles are to help you stay active and look after your wellbeing during this unprecedented time.

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You can try these yoga poses any time of the day as long as you have bit of floor space and few spare minutes. To begin hold each pose for 10-20 seconds and then try to aim for 30-40 seconds as you begin to feel more confident.

If you feel any discomfort with these poses, feel free to pause and move onto another pose. Try to maintain good technique and keep breathing throughout the whole practice.

In between poses have a 10-30 seconds rest. At the end of your practice try to lie down (on your back, belly, or side) for few minutes and closing your eyes.

1. Mountain pose

What it’s good for: A foundational yoga pose that teaches you the correct way of standing and finding your weight on your feet, which will help you with the correct way of walking.

How to do it:

  • Press your feet firmly to the floor and distribute your body weight evenly throughout the whole foot (toes, heels and balls of your feet). Tighten your knees and pull your kneecaps up by contracting the front of your tights
  • Keep your belly in and try to maintain a long spine
  • Proud chest by rolling your shoulder down and back
  • Release your arms and then open and stretch your palms
  • Gaze in front of you somewhere at your eye level
Mountain pose

2. Tree pose

What it’s good for: This pose tones your leg muscles and gives you a sense of balance and poise

How to do it:

  • Stand on your right leg and try to distribute your weight evenly on your right foot like you were doing during mountain pose
  • Keep the leg you are standing on strong and use your muscles at the front of your leg to try and bring your kneecap up
  • Keep a long spine
  • Keep your hips and shoulders square and facing forward
  • Your left foot comes inside of your right leg, ideally above the knee or below. If you cannot reach, try to avoid pressing your foot directly at your knee
  • Keep your hand on your hips or stretch over your shoulder (you can always stand next to a wall if off balance and use your hand to bring it back) and proud chest, look forward like you were doing during the mountain pose
  • Repeat on the other leg
Tree pose

3. Powerful pose

What it’s good for: Helps to get rid of stiffness in your shoulders, strengthens your leg muscles and ankles. Your chest, belly and your lower back will become stronger.

How to do it:

  • Bend your knees as if you were sitting down in a chair
  • Send your hips back rather than your knees forward, so that you can still see your toes
  • Inhale as you raise your arms up around your ears and soften your shoulders. Keep reaching higher, while sitting lower for 5 to 10 breaths
  • Press your feet down to straighten your legs and then bring your arms down to your sides
Powerful pose

4. Warrior 1 pose

What it’s good for: Expands your chest and helps with deep breathing. Gets rid of stiffness in your shoulders and back, helps to build strong knees and ankles and tones up your hips

How to do it:

  • Have one leg at the front with your knee over the ankle and tight parallel to the floor and foot facing forward
  • Back leg stretch as much as comfortably possible with your heel off the floor or on the floor toes facing slightly in
  • Palms facing each other over your shoulders
  • Keep your belly in and maintain a strong, long spine
  • Try to keep your hips facing forward and square
Warrior pose

5. Gate pose

What it’s good for: Helps to corrects your posture, stretches inside of your thigh and maintains a strong belly and back

How to do it:

  • Have one knee on the floor (you can use a pillow or roll mat for extra comfort) with a foot behind your knee
  • Keep your other leg to the side with your heel in line of your other leg knee
  • Keep your stretched leg to the side strong by pulling your knee-cap up and driving your toe to the sky
  • Keep both of your torso sides long and even
  • Keep your belly in and maintain a long spine
  • Gaze forward
  • Palms facing each other over your shoulders
Gate pose

6.Box pose

What it’s good for: Strengthens your hands and feet, tones and strengthens your shoulders, hips, belly and lower back

How to do it:

  • Spread your fingers and firmly press your palms to the floor, try not to lift your knuckles off the floor
  • Keep your shoulder over your wrist so you can achieve 90 degrees between your arms and torso
  • Tuck your toes and press them firmly to floor together with the ball of your foot
  • Try to keep your hips over your knees so you can achieve 90 degree between your thighs and torso
  • Keeping your belly and your back strong, try to lift your knees at around 1-2cm off the floor (if this is too difficult try one at a time)
  • Look down at floor
Box pose

7. Seated forward fold pose

What it’s good for: Very good pose for stretching the back of your legs. Helps with your digestive system and rejuvenates your whole spine

How to do it:

  • Keep your legs together or a few cm apart
  • Press your sit bones to the floor, bring your toes to the sky and contract your quads
  • Try to keep your whole upper body long and straight
  • When ready, begin folding and resting your hands wherever they go
Seated forward fold pose

8. Boat pose

What it’s good for: Strengthens your belly lower back and quads. Gives you a good feeling of balance and helps you to maintain a long spine

How to do it:

  • Press your sit bones to the floor
  • Grab your legs from behind
  • Keep your belly long and close to your thighs
  • Keep chest proud and a long spine
  • Try to take one or both feet off the floor and let go of your hands (if at all possible)
Boat pose
Boat pose

9. Bridge pose

What it’s good for: Very good for your digestive system, nervous system and strengthens your legs

How to do it:

    • Lie down on your back and bring your heels close to your buttocks and keep your feet hip width apart and pressed to the floor
    • Tuck in your tail bone and try to keep your back on the floor
    • Open up your palms and keep to the side of your hips
    • Pick up your hips by pressing your feet and tucking on your tail bone
    Boat pose

    10. Twisted pose

    What it’s good for: Gets rid of stiffness in your spine and hips and also very good for your digestive system.

    How to do it:

    • Lie down on your back and bring your heels to your buttock
    • Slowly turn your right knee towards the floor
    • Slowly turn your left knee towards your right foot area
    • Keep your palms open towards the sky and gaze in the opposite direction to your legs
    • Try to relax your hips
    Twisted pose

    Jude Evans

    Jude Evans Yoga & Movement Teacher, Warwick Sport

    Jude has a background in theatre, movement, and dance. She is passionate about bringing movement, yoga and creative practices to a wide range of people.

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