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Season 3 - Episode 12

Slowly Unwind

30 min - Practice


Set yourself up for a comfortable night's rest. Move slowly and deliberately with your breath in this gentle practice designed to help you feel relaxed, calm, and nurtured before bed.
What You'll Need: Mat

About This Video


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Hey, how you doing? Welcome back to Yoga Anytime. My name is Robert and this is a good night style yoga. So real quick, right? Busy lives, all of us, a lot of screens, a lot of busy, busy, busy things to do.

I find I get the best sleep when I do something like this. I'm not looking at my phone, I go to bed sort of like clear. Take with me into bed, that kind of feeling, all right? So let's see what we can do here. We'll move slowly, deliberately, deep breaths and so set your room up, your space up wherever you are so that when we finish you can just kind of hop in bed and see how that feels.

All right? Let's bring your knees pretty wide. Full breath in and a breath out, landing you in child's pose. So the overall feeling and tone will be relaxing, gentle stretching. And let's see if you're holding on to anything unnecessary from your day to day, which we all do, anything stressful or creating tension anywhere in your body.

Let's see how much of that we can maybe sort of release through breath. So can you find some comfort in long, deep exhalations while holding the pose? Subtle shifting of your hips from side to side. Usually with my practices I'm a little more focused on strength and I'd like you to err on the side of softening, relaxing. Take three more breaths here, breathing gently through your nose.

Every once in a while, exhaling everything you have out of the mouth for what might feel like a sigh of relief type breath. One more time, breathe in and breathe out. Stretch the arms forward toward the front of the mat. Exhale up into a tabletop position. Step your right foot to the right pinky, so it's kind of like out toward the edge of the mat.

You can slide your left knee back a little ways and maybe make sure the whole right foot is on the mat, left hand below your shoulders to support and let your left hip kind of lean to the left and as you do that, kind of roll onto the outer edge of your right foot. So that means your knee is going to work away from your body, opening your hip. Relax through the shoulders. You can bring your right hand down to the mat. You could even bring your left forearm if your wrist is getting a little uncomfortable or if you have that kind of space in your body.

Make it comfortable. Little tipping from side to side, you know, it's such a really nice opportunity to move slowly and communicate with your body. Be in direct relationship with the experience as best you can. Okay, let's try the other side. Come back into tabletop.

As we can, one exhalation takes you back into child's pose, tabletop, left foot forward up by the left pinky or left edge of the mat. Scoot that right knee back as far as it feels appropriate. Okay, same thing. Roll onto the outer edge of the left foot. Maybe take the right forearm down to the mat.

Left forearm if you've got the space. I have a little more space in the left so I can bring the forearm down, but it's just a little too much for me so I'm going to bring my hand to the mat. And then like I did on the other side, encourage you to do softly rock from side to side. When we're doing this, there's the intention, right, is to kind of like hold yourself and care for yourself in this really like this way that you only can. I'm not sure if that resonates but okay.

Come back up and out, tabletop, nice. Take one more child's pose. When in doubt, breathe in and breathe out. Roll up into tabletop, cat cow, five rounds, breathe in for cow pose, breathe out, cat pose. Arching your back, working out any stress or tension or kinks you have in your back body, inhaling through cow pose, arching your back and exhaling rounding.

Press into the center of your palms, spread your shoulder blades, inhale back through cow pose, any kind of neck bending, any kind of like interesting movement you can come up with to customize the cat cow experience is totally welcome. Go two more on your own, just make sure you've got that full breath in into cow and full breath out into cat. Good, stay here, we'll do a little puppy pose. Walk the hands forward, keep your hips above your knees, stretch the arms forward, chin toward the mat, chest toward the mat, maybe your forehead instead of the chin if that bothers your neck. So I like to think of this when I do not just this pose, but this type of practice is creating space in my body, not just walk back out, child just for a moment, it's like creating space physically, anatomically, muscles, joints, ligaments, tendons, all of that, but also through those exhalations, getting rid of unwanted like junk.

Come back up into tabletop, come on to your seat, unwanted junk, stress and tension, don't need it, but we're pretty clever at keeping on to it. So take your feet pretty wide here, and then without really moving, you'll have to adjust accordingly for you, but if you drop your knees over to the right, like so, okay, you might want to bend your left leg a little bit, make it comfortable, the idea is to fold your belly over toward your right calf or on top of your right thigh. Okay, once you find your spot, pigeon variation, find a place to rest your head, we'll take about five breaths here, let the head relax, the neck, and the facial muscles, okay, and just scan the body for areas that you can relax. One more breath, full inhalation, and exhale, like empty the exhales all the way out. Okay, push back up onto your hand, and move that left foot back over so that when you windshield wiper over to the other side, you're pretty much ready to go.

Okay, so bend the right leg, make sure like I don't like my knee on the floor, it feels much better on the mat, so make sure you're comfortable, bend the left leg as much as you need to, lift up, breathe in, and now exhale, walk it out, walk your body over the thigh, maybe over the calf, you know, there's different sensations you can get depending on where you lie your body, I'm preferring personally, my body lying right over my thigh, inner left thigh, create a shelf with my forearms, or my palms, you can grab a blanket or a pillow or something that helps bring the ground up a little bit higher, and in this practice, you know, if you've got the opportunity, what's nice is to really set your space up, the space supports this kind of practice, this practice that hopefully helps kind of send you off to sleep comfortably, a little less stress, a little more relaxed, a couple more breaths. If you're anything like me, if I don't get my sleep, I'm a mess, so I do what I can to set myself up for a comfortable night's rest. Slowly push yourself back up, exit out of the pose, good. From here, comfortable seat, once again, if you have a pillow, something, a cushion, sit up on the cushion, it's that much more comfortable. Take the chin to the chest, hold onto the shins, and pull the belly in, round your back like you would a cat pose, and then push the chest forward, lift the gaze a little bit, breathe in, good, exhale, just one more of these little seated cat cow options, inhale for that seated cow pose, pull into the knees or the shins, push the chest forward, arch the back, nice, back into a neutral, tall, long spine, take a side bend, right hand reaches out to the right, left arm reaches up as high as you can, and over to the right, you can bend your right arm, bringing your elbow down or keep that right arm straight, space, more space, more length, good, back up to center, switch sides, left arm reaching out, right arm reaching up, stretching through the right side of your body, good, all the way back up, interlace your fingers, draw your knuckles toward me, toward the screen, chin to the chest or whichever way, just draw those knuckles forward, so it's one more opportunity to get a little cat-like here, maybe draw the knuckles toward the floor, round and flex your back, all the way up, press your palms to the ceiling, to the sky, pull the arms back a little bit, a little side bend left, side bend right, all the way back behind you for one last little stretch, interlace your fingers if you can, if not hold on to a towel or shirt or something, pull the chest forward, shoulders roll back, lift the chin, we've done different variations of this but now we've got the shoulders a little bit more involved, good, release, stay upright, then we'll roll on to our back, we roll down to your back, hug your knees in, this may be for you the first time lying on your back today from when you got up, may feel good, may feel like finally I'm landing, grounding, take the hands on the knees, create some circles, massaging that potentially tender low back, maybe you drove, you were in traffic for two hours, the low back gets a little funky, that's the other thing, that commute home, all the things you've got to do when you get home just in order to kind of go to your bed, it could just be a lot, so then go ahead and take the arms out into this T formation, let the knees drift to the right, not looking for the deepest spinal twist you've ever done, just a little release in your low back, your mid back, you can take your gaze across to the left, if you feel like taking your right hand on your left thigh for a little extra weight, by all means go for it, don't forget those valuable very helpful exhalations, draw the knees in, like make this transition back to center and to the left really easy, knees in, tuck in, tuck in, tuck in and roll to center, let's bring those knees to the left, twisting to the left, you can take your left hand on that right thigh, good, and keep the gaze straight up or look over the right shoulder, good, another breath or two, good, one more breath, full complete breath in and breath out, knees up to the body and over to center, good, so we're going to head into plow pose and then shoulder stand, these are both optional postures, if you have any neck issues that you're aware of or if you're just not comfortable with going upside down and putting pressure on your neck, stay with the twist or another option would be happy baby, hold on to the outer edges of your feet or somewhere around there and get into the hips, so that's the other option, plow pose, when we come into this don't turn your head side to side, keep it super neutral, back of the neck long, push into the mat alongside your waist, lift your feet and draw the knees in the direction of your forehead and your feet as far back as you can without forcing, support your low back, so hold on to your low back, if your feet are like high off the ground that's cool, don't worry about like forcing them down, if they're touching that's cool too, either way it's fine, if you need to look up and see what I'm doing don't do it from this position, come out of the pose and kind of watch it and then come back in, okay so from plow once you kind of get adjusted to that sensation of your chest kind of pressing into your throat, breath is a little altered, so make sure you can still find somewhat of a comfortable rhythm of breath, begin to support your low back even more and walk your elbows a little closer, bend your knees so that your knees are actually working in the direction of your ears, keep walking your shoulders and shoulder blades toward one another, okay creating this like shelf right and then walk your hands up your back, your low back to the mid back maybe, so my thumbs are wrapped around my rib cage, fingers along my outer edge of my spine, I'm gonna start to lift my legs up supporting my back, so this one seems like and it may feel like there's a lot of effort involved, there is but the sensations and feelings I get from this posture through experience right, while doing it and after especially are and do promote relaxation and the sense of calm, so you might not feel that if this is the first time you've ever done it, give it time, relax your legs a little bit, if you feel like you're not ideally kind of shelved up with your arms, it's hard to do it with your legs overhead, there's a lot of weight kind of you have to balance so if you bend your knees down toward the ears again and you can kind of make the adjustment if you have any more space to walk the shoulders a little bit farther underneath you, walk those hands a little bit higher up your back, good and then legs up, let's hold it five more breaths, pay close attention to your neck and the other body parts that you know if they're feeling unhappy, there's no need to work through any unhappiness as far as that goes right, you want to leave this pose feeling good not injured, let's take one more breath breathe in, exhale the knees down toward the ears, place the hands down onto the mat between using your hands and your arms as breaks in your core, start to roll out if that makes sense to get like one vertebrae at a time, squeeze the belly in a little bit, roll out to the low back, bend the knees, place the feet down, deep breath in and exhale everything out, depending on how you rolled out generally the back of the neck is really stretched out, you can feel the back of the head lengthened, so we'll finish with a couple bridge roll ups, so from this position feet below the knees, push into your heels, lift your hips and reach your arms back overhead palms facing up, so you're reaching all the way back with your hips as high as you can, the backs of your hand pressing down into the mat with your palms facing up, the exhale lower the hips, bring your palms all the way down alongside your body, two more inhale lift, open the front of your body, exhale, one more breathe in, lift the hips, reach up, open up, keep your hips up, sweep your hands underneath you, interlace your fingers, walk your shoulders and arms underneath your body, push your hips up, push your chest up, breathe, make sure your feet are below your knees, your knees and feet and legs are hip width, feet are grounded, you can push your knees forward to get a little bit more like of a stretch on the top of your thighs, we'll hold this for a couple more breaths and sometimes we get super like active in the butt like the glutes, so let's make this gluten free, come on, you might be giggling just a little bit but if you shake the butt loose, release the glutes, it makes so much sense to say gluten free, so now keep your hips up, move your shoulder blades out away from one another, really connect to the center line of your back and roll down one vertebra at a time, place your left hand on your heart, right hand on your stomach, feel your heartbeat, pulse, stretch your legs all the way out, bring your arms alongside your body, we'll take a short, if you're already in bed and you're ready to roll, find a relaxation, if you're on your mat, stay with me for about a minute and then we'll transition, lying down, grounded, possibly feeling a sense of spaciousness, that letting go of some unwanted stress or tension accumulated throughout the day, body's loosened up a little bit and let your entire body relax, feeling totally supported and cared for by you, none of this would have happened without you.

Bend your knees, stretch your arms overhead and roll to your right side, rest your head on your right arm, knees bent, good, push yourself back up to sit, close the eyes, let the forehead drift down to the fingertips, it's in honor of your decision to practice tonight, gratitude, take one more breath together, breathe in, exhale, I hope you have a wonderful sleep, see you next time.


Sarah Beston
1 person likes this.
Hi Jonny, I will reach out via email to try and help. Best, Sarah
Robert Sidoti
Thanks Sarah Beston!
Amy B
2 people like this.
loved the gluten free comment, laughed out loud. Awesome, juicy relaxation, goodnight!
Robert Sidoti
Gooood morning Amy! So you did this before bed? I love a slow practice before bed, always a good move:) And yes, everything is Gluten free these days, why not your bridge pose too? :) Have a great day!
Glenford N
2 people like this.
Thanks Robert. I can barely keep my eyes open

1 person likes this.
a fantastic practice - i felt the tension melt away. many thanks.
Jennifer B
2 people like this.
First time using Yoga Anytime and this was the first class I chose - definitely the right choice to not only end my day with, but to rediscover yoga as a practice for mindfulness and self-care. Thank you, Robert!
Narayan T
2 people like this.
Laughed out loud at the "gluten free" comment and fell out of my bridge, but got back in it, lol. Ready for bed now! Thank you  
1 person likes this.
Welcome Jennifer! SO glad you found a space here for your self care. Do share how things have been and how you're feeling since your first class with Robert  — I'm definitely partial to the slow unwind :) 

Would love to hear more about how you are! Warmly, Ashley from Yoga Anytime
Jennifer B
1 person likes this.
Ashley-Marie Olgado Hi, Ashley-Marie! I've been taking the Feeling Alright 30 day challenge with Robert and am on day 22 - I've been having a lot of fun finding my rhythm with this one. Sometimes I'm able to do the practices in the morning, other times I've found that it was a great way to unwind from the work day.

I feel better and more centered since I started the whole process and am eager to learn more from the other instructors, as well as Robert (who is a fun teacher).  

Best wishes to you, as well!
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