Flow Sweet Flow Artwork
Season 2 - Episode 8

Strengthening Flow

35 min - Practice


Kari leads us through a Vinyasa sequence to strengthen and awaken the legs and glutes. We move through Surya Namaskars (Sun Salutations) and various Warrior Poses to build heat and strength in the body, before finding some supine postures to stretch the glutes and hips. You will feel strong, aware, and alive in your power.
What You'll Need: Mat

About This Video

Feb 19, 2017
(Log In to track)


Read Full Transcript

(waves breaking) Welcome, thank you for being here. So we're just gonna start off in a nice easy seat. So whatever that means for you and your body. Feel free to stack the shins, or take it into a Sukhasana with the ankles tucked under the knees. I like to bring a rolled blanket underneath the hips just for a little forward tilt to that pelvis.

So see what feels right for you. And we're just gonna start by taking the hands forward. And as we take the hands forward just take a moment to give a little wiggle from side to side and just start to feel into that sense of being rooted. And as we root ourselves into whatever it is you are sitting on be that the mat, or your blanket or block, just take a moment to lift the heart up, feel into that extension of the spine. And then we're just gonna start to walk the hands on over to the right side.

And as we walk the hands on over to the right side you'll feel the tendency of this left hip to wanna follow. So what we're gonna do is we're gonna take that left hand and we're gonna utilize the thumb. And we're gonna hook the thumb into that crease of the hip and just use that to anchor. And as we anchor through that left hip, perhaps continuing to walk the right hand a little bit more to the right side. Take a moment here to turn the heart a little bit more to the sky.

You'll feel that deep awakening into the side body. And then with an exhale we're gonna start to turn the heart and the nose towards that right knee. Continue to anchor through that left hip and buttock. And as we turn here you may perhaps start to feel this a little bit more into the back body a little bit more towards that QL, big full breaths. And then keeping the right hand where it is allow that left hand to slowly reach over and begin to join it, walking back through center pausing at center.

Let an inhale lift up through the heart, lift up through the gaze, and again find that length of the spine. And as we anchor back through the hips start to journey on over to the left. We're gonna take that left hand on over, and then let the right hand now slide up hooking the thumb in the hip crease, and then pressing back and down to anchor through that outer right hip and buttock. And again starting off by turning the heart a little bit more forward and open, feeling into the side body, and then continuing to anchor through that outer hip we're gonna let that right hand start to release and come on over to join that left hand. Allowing the heart and the head to find a little bit more heaviness.

Walking slowly through center, from center again, inhale to find the lift and the length, and then exhale let everything soften perhaps bending the elbows maybe even letting that head come down to find the earth. Hands walking under the shoulder heads, chin into the chest as we roll on up the spine. As the head lifts let the shoulders release and just pause. Feeling into that sensation into the hips and buttocks and then in your own time we're just gonna roll forward releasing our selfs onto the hands and knees. And as we come into the hands and knees, just coming into a table top position.

And as we come into that table top position with an exhalation coming into a rounded cat. Now holding the shape of the cat, we're gonna sink the weight of the hips on over to the right side. And it's almost like I'm trying to touch my outer right hip to the floor and you'll find that deep awakening there through the hip and buttock. And then we're gonna sway the weight back right buttock towards the right heel and then still seeing over to the right side sway the weight forward a little bit more over the wrist and then again swaying the weight back right hip and buttock towards the heel. And we'll just take this a few times on this right side so the side body is almost as in the shape of a c.

There's a little accordion action here through my left side. And the next time I take the hips and buttocks back sweep it on over to the left side. And again feel into this outer hip and buttock as we sink the weight to the side, coming forward weight over the wrist, now on the left, sink back through that left buttock and forward. And again just explore what's showing up connecting with the breath, and the next time we sink the hips back go ahead and allow the hips and buttocks to kinda shimmy back through center more towards a traditional Balasana feeling into that sense of lengthening as well as rooting back and down through the hips as much as it feels right for you. From here we're just gonna tuck the chin up into the chest and as we come into that chin tuck that taller mula bandha just start to rise up slowly through a rounded cat so feeling into that sense of length.

From here keeping the hands and knees where they are we're just gonna continue that forward momentum really slowly. So I'm starting to bring some more weight over my wristS and as I do this I'm just gonna let my feet open a little bit wider, continue to slowly lower down in the wave like motion so first I'm gonna lower my thighs, then I'm gonna start to lower my hips, and then peel the heart forward and through as I pull my shoulder heads back and down little wiggle through the elbows into the shape of a modified cobra, bhujangasana. From here lift up from the belly, navel to the spine and begin to press back, I'm gonna bring my big toes together, and find that length once again in balasana. And we're just gonna take this a couple more times with the breath. So chin to the chest, rounded spine through that cat round imagine a wave rolling through the body I'm gonna open my feet start to lower my thighs, lower the hips, lift through the heart, release through the shoulders give that little wiggle back through the elbows.

And then again lift from the navel, bring the big toes together sink back through balasana. We'll take that a third and final time. Chin to chest, rounded spine, as the weight shifts, feet open, hips lower, heart lifts, perhaps even the chin lifts that little exploration, and then exhale back again into that shape of child's pose. So from that final child's pose just rising up back into a table top position, and as we rise back up into that table top position just finding that neutrality, stacking the joints, let the toes curl under, and with an exhale, press back into just a nice easy down dog, just start to feel into the body. We're gonna take a little tail wag, so imagining that you have a tail and just let those hips kinda sway left to right and then I'm gonna deeply bend my right knee.

As I deeply bend my right knee, press back through the left heel, and then left that left hip feel almost as if that thumb is back in that hip crease and pull the left hip back towards the wall. And as I do this you'll see how the right side of my heart starts to drop a little bit more to the earth, so really waking up through the back of that left buttock. And then allow that right leg to start to come to straight deep bend into the left knee, again press back with that hip like it's being extended to the wall behind you, let the right side of your heart get a little bit heavier, soften the jaw, ahhh, and then we're gonna soften both knees as we slowly walk forward bending in to a nice soft ragdoll like utanasana, feel into the length of that spine. Pressing into the feet slowly rolling up to stand, begin to straighten out the legs as we lift and loop through the shoulder heads. Let an inhalation bring us up to the sky feel the length of your front body here and then exhale open wide hinging from the hips just moving nice and slow.

We're just gonna take some half salutes to the sun here. Hands either to the earth, feet or shins let an inhale lift the heart, let an exhale release, soften the knees inhale, open the arms wide press into the feet, let the legs get straighter lifting through the heart, exhale, returning hands to heart center anjali mudra. Inhale, open big and wide, exhale swan dive forward feel free to soften the knees here if the hamstrings are feeling sticky, inhale halfway to lift, exhale to fold come into those softer knees as we root to rise pressing in getting taller and longer, and then exhale returning to the heart. One more, your breath, inhale to rise, exhale to fold inhale halfway, feel the length exhale to soften, we're gonna keep our right foot forward where it is take a nice big step back with your left foot dropping it to that 45 degree angle and then we're just gonna start to turn the hips and the pelvis forward, now for a lot of us this traditional 45 degree angle isn't correct for our bodies anatomically so just start to play with it, see how it feels like to start to turn the hips and the pelvis more forward. And now coming back into that hip crease awareness we're gonna take that right thumb and we're gonna bring it back into that hip crease again and just like we did when we were seated, and just start to pull back as if that back bootie is being extended towards the wall behind you.

And you'll feel how that starts awaken a little bit more into that medial glute so it's gonna ask a little bit more fire in there and as we feel into that sense of strength take that left arm and begin to reach it forward keeping the heart low feel into that sense of length and really start to feel into that fire in that right buttock. Now from here, keeping that thumb in the hip crease just begin to extend this left arm forward and up keeping that knee bent over the ankle and then feel how that full left side of your body can expand and grow. Now from here let that right hand reach up to join towards the left hand, Virabhadrasana I and then soften the shoulders perhaps even bending the elbows if those shoulders feel sticky. Let the heart lift, let the gaze lift take another inhale perhaps finding a little bit more reach and then exhale, a forward fold. Root the hands, step back right to meet left and do a plank position.

Take an inhale, exhale, lower down, perhaps through Chaturanga perhaps using knees on the earth, sliding forward, cobra or up dog whatever your body feels ready for and then let the toes curl under exhale, press back, downward facing dog. Take a nice big breath and open mouth exhale, ahh, soften the jaw, and just feel into the effects of that. Take another inhale, exhale begin to soften the knees walking forward, inhale halfway, exhale to fold. Again, soft knees wide arms press into the earth inhale to lift lengthen and exhale returning to the heart center. Inhale, open wide, exhale forward fold inhale halfway, exhale to release, soft knees, inhale up and open, exhale to the heart.

One more round, your breath, Ardha Surya Namaskar that half salute to the sun, bowing to the self, inhale halfway, exhale to release, keep left foot forward step right foot back. Now again take your time to play around with this sometimes it's even nice to bring the hands onto the hips to play with that sense of turning the pelvis forward adjust the feet as you need, bring that left thumb now into the hip crease and then start to press gently back and as we do that as we pull back through the hip crease you'll feel that start to fire up into that back bootie. Feel that sense of awakening as well as strengthening. Inhale, that right arm forward, and pause here with your heart low feel that whole right side extend and lengthen anchoring through that outer right heel. Inhale, bring that right arm to the sky keep the bend in that left knee, lift through the chest, feel that sense of opening, and then that left arm rises up to meet the right.

Inhale, lift the heart, perhaps bending and softening through the elbows to release the shoulders. Inhale, a little bit more length and exhale folding forward step back high pushup, plank position. Take another in breath, exhale to lower either Chaturanga or knees to the earth. Inhale, sliding forward cobra or up dog exhale, toes curl under, downward facing dog. Big breath in, full breath out, ahh, slow it down.

Inhale the right leg is gonna float upward towards the sky press back with the heel, keeping that leg at hip height so we're worried more about the length and not worried as much about the height. Feel into that sense of widening and opening and then allow that foot to come forward. Again we're gonna rotate that back foot 45 degrees take that right thumb into that hip crease adjust the hips and the feet as necessary. Extend that left arm forward again and fire up that right buttock. Full, deep breaths, inhale lifting up through that left arm feel the left side extend and then let that right arm lift to join it Virabhadrasana I.

As you allow yourself into warrior one starting to bring the weight forward, and just pause it here for a moment and really feel into that sense of extension, so reaching long all the way from that back left heel through the fingertips, and as we feel that extension again awakening through that right medial glute. Take another moment here, and then as you exhale continue to shift that weight forward into that right leg lifting through the left leg, pressing through the heel and beginning to extend and lengthen into Virabhadrasana III playing with leveling out through those hips taking those adjustments. Take another nice big breath in, and then as you exhale soften that right knee let the left toes float back to the earth inhale our back up into Virabhadrasana I and then exhale opening the arms wide stepping back downward facing dog. Play with your dog and just feel into the effects of that take another nice big breath and exhale it all, ahhh. And then inhale let that left leg float up, aka pada pressing with the heel, again focusing a little bit more on growing the body to extension.

Take another inhale as we rise up, exhale sweeping the foot forward, rotate that back right foot, play with the hips and the pelvis as we bring that left thumb back into the hip crease. And as well pull back through that hip crease start to awaken a little bit more energy into that buttock let the right arm start to extend forward and long and pause come into the breath, and then inhale rising up feel into the length of the right side, let the left arm lift to join it opening and then with our exhale begin to extend forward. We're gonna hang out here for a moment feeling into that big long line of energy, take another inhale and as you exhale continue that journey forward shifting the weight into that front left foot start to float up through the right leg press with the heel as we begin to extend and open towards Virabhadrasana III and as we open up into this warrior three playing with the hips, playing with the arms take another in breath, and then soften the knee let that foot float back inhale our way up into Virabhadrasana I and exhale, soften and step back the head without the dog, and then releasing those knees back to the mat, softening into balasana and it may feel nice for those shoulders to stack the hands, forehead resting on the wrists, returning to your breath. As you allow that effort to soften, just feel into that energy that's woken up into the back hips and buttocks. Rising up slowly into all fours, and then we're just gonna transition in ourselves onto our back, so let those knees sweep over to the side lower down through the buttocks, and then begin to recline in your own time.

Pausing here for a moment just letting the palms turn open returning to that belly breath. Let that right knee start to lift up towards the heart we're gonna give that right knee a hug as we slide the left leg along, and then we're gonna hold that right knee with the right hand let the left hand come to the left hip and we're just gonna start to find a little movement through that hip letting the knee move right to left perhaps around in a circle just see what your body's craving. And as we start to loosen up into this right hip switching directions eventually bringing that knee back in towards the heart. And we're just gonna switch hands we're gonna let the left hand come up to the right knee and let that right arm extend out to the side from the shoulder seems like half the letter t. Take a nice big breath in and then as you exhale we're gonna bring the right knee across the body sometimes a little scutch is necessary cuz we really wanna make sure we bring that left hip underneath us so we want the whole pelvis to turn and as we turn through the pelvis here beginning to bring the gaze back around and towards the right side big full breaths, ahh, feel the belly soften, let that right shoulder relax.

More spacious in the mouth, ahhh, and then we're gonna stay in this shape but release the hold of the knee so let both the arms become passive. Now keeping that right knee bent nice and slowly we're just gonna sweep that knee across the ceiling as we unwind the spine, and you'll feel the low back and the pelvis unwind last. When that happens, when you're neutralized keeping the right knee bent just simply lower the foot to the mat. Pause here for a moment and just let the buttocks relax, keeping that right knee bent we're just gonna slowly let it drop open to the side. So we're working our way into supine variation of tree pose here, so the right foot is gonna end up somewhere along the inside of that left leg.

So wherever it feels right for you, and as we settle into that, ahh, relax the buttock relax that extended left leg and foot, and just return to the breath, ahhh. And then keeping that right leg heavy and almost passive let the weightedness of the leg, just slide it out to long all the way to join the left and just feel into how lopsided the body is really feeling the effects of our practice, and then in your own time, no rush, keep that right leg heavy, perhaps extending it back onto your mat. And then let that left knee start to bend and lift up and into the heart, and as we give that knee a hug again we're gonna hold it with the left hand, right hand to that right hip to anchor and then just begin to explore, again it may be side to side, front to back or a circle motion whatever the side is craving, switch it around and see if anything new shows up and then ultimately bringing it towards the heart, let that right hand hold the left knee, then let the left arm extend out from the shoulder head bringing that knee across the body, so as we scutch that bottom hip under us, to turn the pelvis continuing towards the twist on this side to wherever it feels right for you, let the head turn back around towards that left hand soften through the left shoulder, breathe into the belly, ahhh, and then again staying in the shape but release the effort of the arm let that right hand become heavy. And then transitioning so tenderly back as the knee sweeps across the ceiling you'll feel the upper back unwind, it back, low back, and eventually through the pelvis. Pause as you neutralize allow the foot to return to the mat and then just soften through those buttocks, keeping that left knee bent, allow it to start to drop towards the earth coming again into this reclining tree pose sole of the foot wherever it wants to be along the inside of that right leg.

Relax the effort of the buttock, ahhh, soften through the inner thigh, return to the breath. And then again with that tender heaviness start to slide that left leg out to long allowing it to join the right, and then just pause. Big breath in, full breath out, ahhh, and again with no rush, starting to bend both knees, stepping the feet onto the mat, allow your spine and neck and shoulders to neutralize as we bring that right knee back up into the heart this time with the left knee bent. And as we hug the knee towards the heart we're gonna hold onto the knee with just the right hand we're gonna open it out towards the right armpit. So we're gonna feel a little more awakening here in the groin and the abductor.

And then from here we're just gonna start to lift the head gently so not straining in the neck but just lifting the head and you'll feel how the belly engages the low back presses to the earth. From here let your right hand now come to the inside of your right leg and see if that foot is available to you. You can always use a strap, and as we find a hold of the inner arch of that foot, we're just gonna lift the foot up so the heel is above the knee so we're finding that nice straight line here through the lower leg, those tib fib bones. And then again come back to that sense of neutralizing the hips and the pelvis. Now perhaps this is where you stay with that left knee bent to try to keep that left hip grounded.

But if it feels available to you, feel free to play with extending that left leg to long press through the left heel, pull back through the toenails continue to feel into that sense of leveling the pelvis and then the sense of pulling downward on the foot as if there is a brick, big full belly breaths, ahhh. Take one more inhale, exhale, release the hold bring the knee back into the chest and then again let that leg extend to long. And again just allow the mind to feel the change body and mind to integrate. Step the feet onto the mat neutralize through the pelvis, bring the left knee up for a hug, hold the left knee with the left hand and open it out wide so it's the sense of bringing it to the outside of the ribs and then higher towards the armpit, anchoring through this left hip we're gonna lift the head feel the core engage the low back presses to the earth, left hand to the inside of the foot, opening up towards the sky, bringing that heel over the knee, and then lowering the head as we gently start to pull down. So again the sense of trying to drop the knee towards the earth keeping that nice straight line perpendicular to the floor.

Perhaps staying here, or maybe exploring on this side sliding the right leg to long, press through the heel take those little wiggles and adjustments, soften the jaw, breathe, ahhh, releasing the hold bring the knee back into the heart, allow both legs to release, and starting to settle in for shavasana. Softer in the fingers, softer in the toes, softer in the throat, ahhh. And when your body feels ready, beginning to reawaken slowly feeling into those sensations, the movements, whatever you're craving, bending the knees, and then bringing both knees up in for a hug and then opening both knees wide to the armpits, allow the knees to come together as we roll to the side. Pressing in to slowly rise up, finding a comfortable seat for you in this moment. And just pausing to observe the flow of the in breath and the out breath.

And letting the hands join at the heart center, the light within me, recognizes and honors the light within you. Namaste.


Judy S
2 people like this.
I love your teaching. You're awesome.
Kari Sims Anthon
Ah, thanks Judy! I think YOU are awesome! Thanks for practicing with me! Xo Kari
Amy H
1 person likes this.
That was great, thank you! I like the pace, and the balance of challenge and release.
Kari Sims Anthon
Thanks for joining me online Amy! Awesome to practice with you virtually! xo Kari
Dannette W
1 person likes this.
That was really lovely and your guidance was excellent! Thank You
Kari Sims Anthon
Thank you Dannette! So glad we were able to play together :) xo Kari
Angel B
Great class! I love your balance of ease and strength. xoxoxo
Kari Sims Anthon
Thank you Angel ! So happy to be with you here - and soon in person for our YogaAnytime Family Reunion in Oregon!! Xo
Loved your teaching style and cues.
Darlene M
Back in Mexico. Where I always find you. Thanks so much
1-10 of 14

You need to be a subscriber to post a comment.

Please Log In or Create an Account to start your free trial.

Footer Yoga Anytime Logo

Just Show Up

Over 2,900 yoga and meditation practices to bring you Home.

15-Day Free Trial