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Yoga Sutras of Patanjali Artwork
Season 4 - Episode 3

Easy Spinal Movements

15 min - Practice
19 likes
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Description

Following James' tutorial on spinal movements, James guides us through a simple and effective spinal movement practice. You will feel spacious and easeful.
What You'll Need: No props needed

About This Video

Apr 14, 2017
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Transcript

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So for this spinal movement sequence, taking a comfortable stance with the feet about hip width apart, can bring a gentle bend into the knees, but maintain that sense of lift and spaciousness through the joints and the legs. Feel the tailbone heavy working down and feel the fronts of the hips coming ever so slightly forwards. So we feel that spaciousness through the lumbar spine and then bring the hands together more or less in front of the level of the waist, backs of the hands facing, fingers pointing down. Feel the support of the earth underneath the feet, feel that internal lift through the ankles, knees, hips and through the whole length of the spine. And then gently invite the arms to reach upwards, lifting them up through the centre line until the fingers begin to point upwards and a little bit forwards. Bring the hands ever so slightly forwards and up to really invite that sense of lengthening in space through the whole length of the vertical column. Be active in the fingers, but check you can move the fingers, check you can move the neck, check the face muscles are relaxed and feel that sense of length in the spine. Maintaining that sense of length, begin now to bring the hands forwards and downwards, moving smoothly and easily. Just bring in the hands as far forwards as feels good for you. So that could be not so much, it could be a little bit more. But we begin to invite that sense of forward bending in the thoracic spine, all the while maintaining a sense of openness in the front of the body. Hands continue to come down a little bit further until the fingers begin to point towards the ground and then move backwards so the hands come behind the line of the hips and the fingers point back. Then they turn in and come through the left of the floating ribs, keeping the length in the lumbar spine. And then the hands reach forwards and out to the side, stretching the wrist the opposite way. So the fingers stretch back, then arc the arms out and high above the head to invite that bending into the upper part of the thoracic spine again. Lengthening the front body without shortening the back. Maintain that length, bring the hands to the opposite elbows above the head and then lift out of the right side of the navel and begin to slide smoothly the hands away from one another. So the left hand comes down to the side, the right arm reaches up above the head. Feel that lovely sense of length in the right side of the body but feel how the left side of the body is not closing. Then turn in the left palm, gather the energy back up with the left hand, reaching up to the level of the right hand and then bend the elbows, hands to opposite elbows. Lift out of the left side of the navel. Lengthen the left side body and then sliding the hands away from one another. Left hand up, right hand down to the side, active in the fingers.

Check you can move the fingers, check you can breathe. And then as before, gather the energy with the right palm this time, lifting it up towards the level of the left hand. And then keeping the length in the spine, gently bring the hands down, more or less the level of the shoulders in front of the chest. And then from here, keeping the fingertips fairly close to begin with, rotate from the navel one vertebra at a time towards the left. All the while keeping the hips facing forward. So we just isolate the rotational movement in the spine. Stay here if you prefer, you can open the arms wide, leading with the elbows and the wrists, then in the fingers reach out and look towards the front hand. You can perhaps see both sets of fingers in the peripheral vision, look towards the front hand. Check that both sides of the neck are spacious. Then gather the energy with the left hand and bring it forwards underneath the right arm. Bring the hands back to that start position, fingers more or less facing in front of the chest. And then rotating from the navel towards the right now, keeping the hips facing forwards. Stay there or if you'd like to go further, begin to open the arms away from one another, leading with the elbows and the wrists. See both sets of fingers in the peripheral vision and turn the gaze towards the front hands. Check that both sides of the neck are spacious. Check you can move the fingers, check you can move the neck. Then gather the energy with the right arm, bring it underneath the left. Then come back to that start position with the hands, fingertips facing more or less in front of the chest.

And then bring the hands gently back down to that position we started off in with the hands more or less at the level of the waist or the navel. Fingers point down and then from here we reaffirm that sense of beautiful length and space through the virtual commas, reach the arms up, pause and really feel that spaciousness in the spine. Hands ever so slightly forwards, check the neck can move, check the fingers can move, check you can belly can breathe. And then bring the hands forwards to invite that forward bend in the thoracic part of the spine, feeling the back body length and without shortening the front and the hands come forwards and down, deepening that sense of forward bend without moving the hips. And then once the fingers face towards the ground, let them come back behind the level of the hips and then bring the hands through at the level of the floating ribs. And then as the hands come through, stretch the wrist back the other way and then arc the arms out and lift them high above the head, inviting that extension. And then that back bend in the thoracic spine and then bring the hands to the opposite elbows above the head, lift out of the right side of the navel, slide the hands away and come into the side bend, lengthen the right side body without shortening the left and then turn the left palm, gather the energy lifting the left arm up to the level of the right. Again, bend the elbows, lift out of the left side of the navel, slide the hands away from one another, feel that lovely sense of length and space in the left side body without closing the right and then gather the energy with the right palm, lift it up high to the level of the left and then bring the hands more or less in front of the shoulders, level of the upper chest and keep the hips facing forwards as you gently begin to rotate, this time to the right first of all, one vertebra at a time, smooth movement, stay here if you prefer, open the arms wider, see both fingers in the peripheral vision and look to the front hand, check the next relaxed and spaced on both sides and then gather the energy with the right arm, bring it underneath the left in front of the torso, bring the hands then in front of the chest once more and again keeping the hips stable and facing forwards, smoothly rotate to the left now, stay here or perhaps open the arms wider, feel that spaciousness through the whole of the body, feel that active presence from the feet through to the fingers and then gather the energy with the left palm, bring the left arm underneath the right and then bring the hands so the fingertips face one another more or less the left of the chest and gently bring the hands smoothly down towards the level of the navel, let the fingers then begin to point downwards, backs the wrists face one another and the same sequence once more, first of all the spinal lengthening, backs the hands face and then the fingers point up and the palms open little as we reach the hands up high above the head, shoulders reaching up towards the ears, feeling that lovely sense of length through the whole vertical column and then come into the forward bend, maintaining the tailbone working downwards, maintaining the stability in the hips, gently let the hands come forwards, reaching with the fingers and then as the fingers come towards facing down towards the ground they come back behind the level of the hips, point backwards and then come through at the left of the floating ribs then the hands reach out, the wrists can stretch back the other way, arms make an arching shape to lift above the head, feel that lovely little back bend in the thoracic part of the spine and then bring the hands to the opposite elbows, lift out of the right side of the navel, slide the hands apart, come into the lateral bend, side bend, left hand down, right arm high, feel that lovely sense of length in the right side body without compromising a sense of space in the left, then turn the left palm, smooth, let the left hand reach back up high above the head, then bring the hands to the opposite elbows, lifting from the navel, the left side of the body lengthens and then glide the hands away from one another, left hand reaching high, right arm out to the side, feel the spaciousness in the left side body without compromising the space in the right and then turn the right palm smoothly, guide it back up high above the head and then gently, smoothly bring the hands down, more or less the level of the upper chest or shoulders in front of the body, fingertips facing, then keeping the hips facing forwards smoothly from the centre, rotate towards the right, stay here if you prefer, you can open the arms as well, leading with the elbows, then the wrists, then the fingers, check the fingers can move, check the belly can move, check the neck is relaxed, look towards the front hand and then gather the energy with the right arm, bring it underneath the left, then the fingers face one another once again in front of the chest, back to that start position, hands in front of the chest, shoulder height and then rotate towards the left, one vertebrae time, keeping the hips facing forwards, stay here or if you prefer, begin to open the arms wider, see both sets of fingers in the peripheral vision then gently turn the gaze to the front hand and check that both sides the neck stay spacious and easy, check you can move the neck, check you can move the fingers and then gather the energy with the left arm underneath the right, let the fingertips slide out so they face one another more or less in front of the chest and then let the hands come back down towards the level of the navel and then one more time from the start position, fingers start off facing down, tail down, hips ever so slightly forwards, the lumbar spine stays long then the hands smoothly reach up and stretch up towards the sky and a little bit forwards to really invite a sense of roominess through all of the virtual column and know you can always stay long in any of these positions if you'd like to, from here we come towards the forward bend, lengthening the back body without shortening the front, the fingertips reach forwards and begin to move downwards and then when the fingers begin to face towards the ground and the shoulders stretch backwards, hands come beyond the level of the hips behind us and the fingers come through at the level of the floating ribs facing inwards and then we stretch the fingers back the other way and then the arms arc out and high above the head into the standing back bend and then bring the hands to the opposite elbows above the head and now lift out of the right side of the navel, slide the hands away from one another, right hand stretching high, left arm reaching down, feel the space in both sides of the torso and then gather the energy with the left arm, reach it up high, as high as the right hand, hands to opposite elbows, lift out of the left side of the navel now, slide the hands away from one another, left arm high, right arm out to the side, lovely stretch in the left side body but we also feel space in the right, then gather the energy with the right arm, lifting that right arm high, feel the length and space through the spine, maintain it as you bring the hands down, so resting at the level of the upper chest or shoulders and then from here we'll go to the left again, from the navel, hips staying facing forwards, rotate towards the left, stay here or if you prefer begin to open the arms wider, see both hands in the peripheral vision and then turn the gaze so you can look more at the front arm, front hand and check the next relaxed and space on both sides, check the fingers can move, check the belly can breathe, check your relaxed and easy and then gather the energy with the left arm, bring it underneath the right, hands facing more or less, fingertips facing in front of the upper chest, then rotate from the navel towards the right, stay here or if you prefer open the arms wider, leading with the elbow and the wrist, see both hands in the peripheral vision and then turn the gaze to the front arm, check you're relaxed, feel the stability in these and the whole of the body, feel the belly can breathe, fingers are active but they can move, neck is relaxed, face is relaxed, you can smile and then bring the right arm back underneath the left, glide the hands and elbows out to the sides of the hands are facing in front of the left of the chest and without shortening the spine, gently bring the hands back down towards the level of the navel, feel that spaciousness in the body, feel that vitality through the whole of the body, notice how just by moving the spine a little you can invigorate the whole body, thank you.

Comments

Janet L
woooooooow is beautiful and it feels amazing!!! thank you!!!
Caroline S
that was a wonderful sequence thank so much for that.  Staying relaxed through it is quite challenging!!

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