30 Day Yoga Challenge Artwork
Season 1 - Episode 23

Day 21: Invigorate Your Day

20 min - Practice


Feel invigorated, and wake up your back body by adding in some simple inversions to today's yoga class. A block will be helpful.
What You'll Need: Mat


Read Full Transcript

(waves) Hey, welcome back to Yoga Anytime. This is practice number 21. I cannot believe, that's like three full weeks of yoga. I feel pretty good. I actually feel pretty amazing after that last practice, after the heart opening, back bending stuff. So, this practice, lot of familiar faces, but a new addition to the crowd, and that's going to be plow and shoulder stand.

So I'll give you a couple options. As always, do what feels right for you, challenge yourself just a little bit, and we will have a lot of fun. Number 21, we're almost to 30. Ha. Okay. Front of the mat, be hip width, we've been here before. Take your palms, you almost didn't remind me, palms together, one breath, you and I, breathe in, breathe out, ground, arrive, and whooh.

Okay, here we go. Inhale, circle the arms up, good strong base in the legs, lengthen your body, arms, fingertips, get up there tall, breathe in and breathe out, forward bend. Inhale, come up halfway, exhale, plank pose. Okay, set those knees down, we've done knee push-ups, we've done up dog, we did that in practice number 20, now we're going to incorporate the two of them, alright? So, lower down, keep your elbows over the wrists, shift your shoulders forward without dropping your hips, alright?

Lower down about halfway, pull your shoulders back, look forward a little bit, now right around here untuck the toes, push, push, push into the hands, lifting the kneecaps, pulling the shoulders back, chest forward, nice. Not bad. Good job. Downward dog exhale. So from up dog, I know you're holding it here but be strong, thighs, your quads, and your belly are what drive you to upward dog. Alright, so on your exhale, engage, lift, roll all the way up and back. Nice. Take a big breath in here. Downward facing dog on your exhale. Good.

Lift your right leg high, inhale, exhale right foot to the right thumb. Bring your back heel down, right hand up on to your thigh. Okay? Now take your left arm, reach it forward, lift your body up a little bit and begin to gain a ton of foot and leg strength. Now circle the left arm, up, back, shoulders stacked over the hips. Strong base, warrior two.

Right forearm on that right thigh, pull the hip back, left arm draws straight up, you can choose to keep the arm here, or put a little bit of an angle on that left arm. Do your best not to let your head and neck collapse into that right shoulder. Push away. Good. Reverse warrior, one breath. Breathe in, and now circle the arms down as you breathe out, step back into plank pose, good. Set the knees down, breathe in.

Exhale, lower down halfway. Inhale pull yourself forward and up for upward dog. Good strong legs here. Now to give you a sense of how strong that legs need to be, and the belly, I want you to from here, keep your feet exactly how they are, but lift your hips up and hold a plank pose. Your legs are firing, your belly's strong, good.

Now lower back down, you can put the knees down or keep them lifted, pull the shoulders back, chest open, big breath in, and now exhale, downward facing dog. Left leg rises, breathe in. And exhale, step it all the way up. Bring the back heal down, left hand on the thigh, right arm forward. Power from the ground up. Warrior two.

(loud exhale) Good. You can spend a couple breaths here, and then we'll begin to settle in to extended side angle. Left hip, pull it back as you bring your right hip forward. You can see clearly what I'm talking about. Left hip back. Good. Now the right arm, go ahead and extend it straight up, maybe a little bit of an angle, breath in, belly, breath out, belly.

Reverse warrior, breathe in, breathe out, windmill the arms down, step the right foot up to meet your left, forward bend exhale. Inhale lift halfway, exhale fold. Inhale rise all the way up, exhale chair pose. Good job. Inhale, reach up. Exhale with the arms out, try this one.

Arms out, knees bent, little swan dive action. Forward bend. Inhale, lift halfway. Exhale, plank pose. Step back, step back, knees down, exhale, lower half way. Shoulders back, elbows in. Then pull yourself forward and up for upward dog on the breath in.

Exhale, downward facing dog. Lift your right leg up, breathe in, exhale one knee to elbow, good strong core movement here, inhale, send it high, exhale step it all the way up, back heel down. Inhale, warrior two. Extended side angle, right forearm on the right thigh, left arm, swing it all the way up. Put an angle on it. All the way from the outer edge of your left foot to the left fingertips. Reverse warrior. Reach up and back, breathe in.

And breathe out, windmill the arms down, step back into plank, knees down, lower half way, inhale, upward facing dog, exhale, downward facing dog. Inhale the left leg high, exhale knee to elbow one time, good strong belly here, inhale, send it high, exhale, send it all the way up, back heel down, warrior two. Left forearm on the left thigh, right arm reaching all the way up, put an angle on that right arm, get a nice stretch up through the right side of your body, if you want to use a little bit more core, take that left arm, reach it out like you're holding a tray, maybe both hands, good. Reverse warrior, breathe in. Breathe out, circle the arms down, step the right foot up to meet your left, exhale there. Inhale, lift. Exhale, step back into plank pose.

Pause here, breathe in. Exhale, lower all the way down. Point the toes back, let's roll right into locust rows. Inhale, bring the arms forward, exhale, lift the chest, pull the elbows back, and you can pull the elbows back, and even at a slight angle, up and back, like a real row. Let's do nine more. Strong back. Breathe in, keep your legs strong, breathe out. Two.

Breathe in, breathe out. Three. Breathe in, breathe out. Four. Breathe in, breathe out. Five. In, exhale. Six. In, exhale. Seven.

In, exhale. Eight. Inhale, exhale. Nine. Inhale, exhale. Ten. Put the hands down, lift up a little bit more, breathe in. And exhale, child's pose.

Bring the knees a little closer to one another. Stack your palms, rest your forehead. (breathing deeply) Couple breaths. Okay. Let's transition up onto your knees and your heels, and then spin around on to your seat. So, because we're gonna be getting into plow pose and shoulder stand, I thought it would be nice to be able to bring some attention to the entire back body, your spine, by rolling forward and back, five to six to seven times.

So, I like to hold on to the back of my legs, the hamstrings, roll back, bring the feet back in the direction behind my head, and then roll up. When you're doing this and you're at home and you're rolling back, don't turn your head sideways to view what I'm doing. If you're interested in what I'm doing for now, stop what you're doing, watch me, and then rewind it or whatever you need to do. Keep the head in line with the spine. You could even, when you come up, come up bottoms of the feet, fold, that bound angle pose.

(breathing deeply) And more and more, depending on the time of day, will really depend on how far you can get your feet back. Let's go two more. Good. Now roll down to your back. I'm gonna grab my block here, so I'm gonna use this as an option here in a moment. Bridge pose. Feet below the knees, arms alongside your body, robot arms, remember, right?

Push into your feet, push into your arms, walk the shoulder blades toward one another. (breathing deeply) So from here if you know that you're not interested, or you don't know, you can always come back, but, an option for shoulder stand is to place the block underneath your low back, right at that base, at your sacrum there, that flat bone, fused bone. Now from here a great option, I think, is to let the legs rise up. And you may have to adjust, I like to bring it a little closer, and the legs up, arms down. There's a little bit of effort in holding the legs up, but there's no strain on the neck.

You can relax the legs, and get some of the calming benefits of the inversion. So stay here, or join us, as we bring the feet down, gonna move the block back out of the way, and lower down. Remember, head in line with the spine, nothing forced whatsoever, what I'm gonna do, I'm gonna put my hands alongside the body, bend the knees, and using my core strength, I'm gonna push back, and then immediately support my low back. And you can see, my feet, if I really push it, my feet touch. But right now I'm gonna leave them lifted, it's fine.

I'm not looking side to side, nor are you, okay? If you need to come out and see what I'm doing, come out, look, and then re-enter. So from here bend your knees a little bit, and then walk your arms under you, like a bridge, walk the arms and the shoulder blades a little closer to one another, and the hands up your back. What this will do is create a shelf, and a support system, as you begin to then lengthen the legs possibly. So my hold is at my low, my mid to low back.

Chin pressing into the chest, breathing, the back of the neck is long and safe. (breathing) To exit, bring your knees down toward the ears, palms to the mat, using core strength and your arms as brakes, slowly roll out. You might even feel the back of the neck stretch out and lengthen. From here with your hands underneath your seat, supporting your low back, you can lower your legs all the way down, using a little bit of your core strength you've been developing over these last 21 practices. Good. Lower all the way down.

Now once the legs are down, release the hands for a moment, take a deep breath in, and a deep breath out. (loud exhale) If that's your first time ever, good job. If you chose not to do it for whatever reason, good job. Walk your hands underneath you, this is the counter-pose, called fish pose. Walk your hands as far underneath you as you can, and your elbows as well.

So before in shoulder stand and plow, we were really kind of restricted, our chin was to the chest, now we're gonna really push through the elbows and backs of the arms to push the chest up, and then the head back, throat wide open. Good. Push up to come out, release the hands. (loud exhale) Bend your left leg, cross your right leg as far over your left as you can, creating, as if you were sort of asked to sit properly, right. Now shift your hips to the right, hands free now, hands free twist. You're going to now draw the legs over to the left.

Twisting, rinsing, cleansing, anything out that needs to be let go of. Really reach out long, reach out wide with those arms. You're doing great. Wow, 21. So cool. Bring it back up to center, everything back to center, undo, and do the other side.

So cross the left over the right, shift your hips over to the left, and now draw both knees to the right for a reclined eagle-leg spinal twist. Allowing yourself to relax. Good. Come back up to center. Situate yourself on the center of the mat. Stretch your legs long, stretch your arms long.

Little grin, a little bit like yes, wow. I did it. I did it again. One more time. Press the palms back, stretch your shoulders as long as you can. Get a little arch in the back, and then press your entire back down. Use your core.

Good. Now last movement before we relax. Draw the knees into the body. Bring the feet back down, slide it out. Take for a moment your right hand on your belly, left hand on your heart. Here you are right now, 21 days in.

(deep breathing) Feel the action of the breath, inhale, exhale. If you tune in even to more subtle feelings, you might feel the heart beat, or your pulse. (deep breathing) Roll to your side. Rest your head on that left arm, or the right arm, depending on which side you came up. (deep breathing) Okay, good. Push up to sit.

Thanks so much for joining me, again, for number 21. Press your palms together, bow the forehead down toward your fingertips in honor of your effort in showing up. To your health. Namaste.


Dannette W
3 people like this.
That totally rocked! Thank you for including an alternative way to feel the sensation of the full inversion using the block - that move will definitely become part of my regular routine.
Maria Elena D
I'm really looking forward to a day off, I will not lie, :) but today, I am grateful to show up in honor of my commitment to myself. Hadn't done the plow in a long while, its an invigorating pose for sure. thanks Robert! good day all!
Marilyn J
2 people like this.
Expansive and rich experience on and off the mat these 21 days and an excellent pivot into 2017! Thank you for showing up.
Robert Sidoti
Awesome Marilyn! I'm sure you've just finished up by now? Hope you are feeling strong, balanced, open and alive:)) All my best, Robert
2 people like this.
That was a great practice - thanks for giving us an alternative pose for the full inversion. Each day I am feeling stronger. Wonderful. Thank you.
Louisa G
1 person likes this.
Namaste Robert, great session this morning for woo hoo Day 21. It is 5.30am and 29.5 degrees Celsius this morning! Yep it's building up for another downpour here in the tropics! Now time for a swim :) thank you see you tomorrow. I hope you do another 30 days after this 30 because I'm loving this routine!
Robert Sidoti
Louisa! Sounds like you live in a wonderful place! Glad you are loving the routine of this challenge, we hope to get another one going again!
Scuba Chick
1 person likes this.
Day 21. I feel so stoked to be at day 21 of yoga. I feel stronger every day. And, I know I keep saying this, but it's quite profound to show up and do something positive, every day, no matter what my mood. It's makes a huge difference. Oh, and I love that we're getting into a more flowy practice, building on what we know. Thank you much for the gift of this practice.
Ruth E
1 person likes this.
Robert Sidoti
Day 21 Ruth !! Well done✌️💪🏼🙏🏽
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