Good Morning Yoga Artwork
Season 6 - Episode 7

Morning Chill Session

30 min - Practice


Alana guides us in a chill floor practice to start the day with some gentle stretches and body awareness practices. You will feel easeful, spacious, and free of tension.
What You'll Need: Mat, Blanket, Strap


Read Full Transcript

Good morning. This is a chill practice designed for when you don't quite feel like moving, but you want to feel better. No standing lunges or sun salutations in this practice. So we'll start on our back. You might have a blanket and a strap for this practice. And find your way there. We'll move right into windshield wipers. You might want to blanket under your head this morning and stretch your arms overhead, feet nice and wide apart. Inhale, exhale, let your knees fall to the right. Inhale, back up and exhale over to the left, cruising on to the edges of the feet. Inhale, knees up, exhale to the right. Inhale up, exhale to the left. A few more rounds. Beginning to move here with your breath. And inviting a quality of ease up through your spine. Finding this freedom up through the neck. And your head might roll in one direction or the other. Spining a bit more space through the hips, the side body, and checking in with how you feel. So as your knees come over to the right, you might hang out here and stretch a little bit more through that left arm. Stay here. Bring your right ankle on top of that left thigh. If your right hand finds your left wrist there, as you open the right hip, let the knee fall towards the floor. Offer a gentle traction through the side body. Waking up, side body, lung. Nice. Releasing that right foot. Inhale the knees up, exhale to the left. Stay here. Reach to that right arm and bring your left foot on top of that right thigh. Clasping left hand around that right wrist. Offer a gentle traction through the right side body. Become aware of the breath. Releasing that left foot. Inhale the knees up. Bring the feet about hips distance apart. Bring the right ankle on top of that left thigh. Drawing that right knee in towards the chest and let it open a few times. Keeping that left foot grounded. Inhale, rotate the right knee in. Exhale, let it open. More time rotating the right knee in. Exhale, let it open. And then without your hands, draw that left knee in towards your chest. Let yourself rock side to side. And you might stay with this. You might curl up. Find the back of that left thigh or maybe the shin. Releasing the shoulders and the head down. There's a little wobbling or rocking here. Offering a flex through the right ankle. Allowing the hip to gradually open. And breathing into where you feel the stretch this morning. Softening through the face. Nice. Allow for another inhale. Exhale, release that left foot down. Just release the right foot to join the left. Clearing breath. Inhale. Exhale. We'll find that on the other side. Left ankle across the right thigh. Open the hip. Now rotate the knee in towards your chest. And exhale, let it open. Two more times. Keeping the right foot grounded on the floor. And exhale, let the left hip open. One more time. Rotating it in. Exhale, let it open. And then without the hands, draw the right knee in. Let yourself rock a little side to side. Just tuning into how it feels this morning. Any sensations here. You might stay with this. You might curl up. Leave your hands through the legs. Find the back of the right thigh or maybe the top of the shin. Maybe there's a little rocking here. Just notice where you can relax any effort. Eyes, mouth, fingers. Notice the quality of your breath. Let's take an inhale. And exhale, releasing that right foot down. Releasing the left foot down. Clearing breath. Inhale.

Be an audible sigh on the exhale. We'll draw the right knee into the chest. You can interlace the fingers. And then bring your strap, if you have one nearby, around the bottom of your right foot. And extend your right leg up towards the sky. Allow it to bend and extend it a few times. Easing into the hamstrings and your knee there. Eventually extending it towards straight. Flexing the foot. Spreading the toes. You might keep your left foot on the floor to support your back or maybe extend through your left leg. Flexing the foot. And then let your right leg float a little side to side. You might bring the strap into your right hand. Kind of flossing the hamstrings. And keeping it stable through that left hip, the back of the sacrum. So the tendency is to want to kind of tip over. See if you can find a quality of weight and grounding through the pelvis. If it would feel nice, bring the right leg out to the right for a few breaths. Extending through that left leg and flexing the foot if it's lengthening. Breathing. Relax through the neck. Inhale back to center. Bring the strap in your left hand. Bring your right thumb into your hip crease. This is one of my favorites. Stay here. Bring the leg across the body. You start to feel a stretch through that outer right hip and hamstring. And maybe you begin to explore the shape of the twist as the leg moves across the body and the right arm might reach out. Inhale, reach from the center out and then exhale, soften the belly. And finding a place where the neck feels good and comfortable. Breathing into where you feel it. As you're ready, inhale, come back to center and pause. You might stay here. You might curl up this morning. Draw the chin into the chest. And maybe the forehead comes towards your right knee and you might lift that left leg up, rounding. And then exhale, slow release the spine, one vertebrae at a time. Remove the strap, flex your right foot and slowly lower down. Feeling the lower abdomen draw towards the spine. Relaxing the effort for a moment here. Notice how you feel. Intune sensation down the right hip and leg. Clearing breath, inhale. Nice, full exhale. Drawing the knees into the chest and then just rock a little side to side to reset. From here, lower the feet to the floor. Draw the left knee and we'll find that on the left side. Bring your strap around the bottom of your left foot. Extend your left leg up and just allow it to bend and extend a few times. Easing into the hamstrings. Easy with the knee. And eventually moving towards an extension, spread the toes, let the bottom of the foot open. Stay with the right knee on the floor. Extend your right leg and flex the foot. Strapping the left hand. You might ground the right hand on the pelvis there. And then flossing the left leg out and across. Easing into sensation. Finding any edges of resistance or stickiness. And see if you can kind of stabilize and ground through your pelvis a bit. And you might stay with this. You might open out to the left for a few breaths. Letting the hip open and then feeling the leg extend. Taking a few breaths here. Nice. Inhale, draw the leg back up. Switch the strap, the hands. Right hand on the strap. Left thumb into the hip crease. Inhale, find some length on the left side. And then exhale, bring the leg across. You might hang out when you first begin to feel a stretch. And this might be the spot this morning. You might take it all the way into a twist if that would feel fun and nice. And maybe that left arm stretches out. And as you inhale, kind of roll that left hip away from the shoulder. And then exhale, really soften the belly. And find a place where the neck and head feel happy. Breathing through the mouth. You might stay here for a bit longer.

As you're ready, inhale, come back up. And stay here. Chin into the chest. Walking your way up the strap. Bringing your forehead towards your shin. Reaching through that right leg. Curl up. And then slowly lower down. Remove the strap. Flex your foot and lower all the way down to the floor. Nice and slow. Leading with your heel. Nice. Relaxing the effort. Take a moment here. Observe. Learing breath. Inhale. And exhale. Draw the knees into the chest. Let yourself rock. We're going to roll onto our side for a lounging Buddha. So roll onto your right side. And let your head rest on your bottom arms. The bottom arm is long. And keep a soft bend through the knees if you'd like to. Top arm resting on the legs. Stay here. Maybe prop your head up with your hands. Soft gaze. All right. Allowing yourself to stay aware as the body feels a bit more relaxed. You might stay here if you want to offer two options. One is to find the foot for a quad stretch. Stretching the front of the thigh. You can also use your strap here. So your bottom knee can be bent. Or you might extend your leg. The other option, if it's available, is to bring your peace fingers, your two hands, around the big toe and maybe extend it up. And I like to bend the bottom leg like a kickstand to help myself stay up. And a few breaths in whatever shape you're in. Nice. And then slowly release the hand and release the leg. We'll roll onto our belly and pause. And then roll onto the other side. Extend the arm out. We'll meet in lounging Buddha. Top arm resting on the legs. You might keep your head here. You might prop it up with your bottom hand. Just taking a few moments, feeling the quality of the shape. The option to stay here. Bring your right hand on top of that bottom foot. Kicking in as you find that gentle opening for the shoulder and the quad stretch. Stretching the front of the thigh. Or maybe if it would feel fun and it's available. Peace fingers around the big toe.

Stretching the leg up towards the sky. And see if you can lengthen the underside of the body. Feeling that stretch on the floor. Feeling any wobbling. Right as you balance. Nice. Exhale. As you're ready, exhale. Release the hand. Slowly release the leg. And whatever shape it's in. And we'll meet on our belly. Slide the palms underneath the shoulders. And then we'll press up onto the knees and find some cat cows. You might have a blanket under your knees for support. Spread the fingers wide. Maybe the toes tuck under. Inhale. Exhale. Round the back. Stretching chin towards the chest. And inhale. Move into your extension. Your cow lengthening. Exhale. Navel draws towards the spine. Stretching the back. Shoulder blades widen. And then move towards your extension. Feeling that slight arch happening through the back. And continue to explore a few rounds. Moving at your own pace. With your breath, the gaze might soften inward. As you invite this fluid movement through your spine. Nice.

You might lean to one side and lean to the other side. Leaning back. Leaning forward. Feeling a bit more space. Hands might stay facing forward. You might turn the palms out or palms might turn away from you. Kneels of the palms might turn away. And then eventually we'll meet a downward facing dog. Fingers forward. Tuck the toes. Lift the hips. Downward facing dog. And in today's practice, downward dog is kind of the peak pose. You can bend one knee and stretch the calf and heel to the floor. Bend the other knee and stretch the opposite calf. Heel to the floor. Walking it off. From your downward facing dog, lower the knees. We're going to lower onto our bellies here. Keeping the elbows into the ribs. Sliding in distinct pose. Coming onto the forearms. So having your elbows in front of the shoulders. And taking a few moments. Feel that you can traction the heart forward a bit using the upper arms. Feeling that widening maybe across your collar bones. And yeah, drawing the shoulder blades down the back. And if you would like to take a neck stretch, let the chin come towards the chest and then maybe the right ear comes towards the right shoulder. Softening the mouth. And then letting the head come back. Chin to the chest. And then left ear towards the left shoulder. Chin to the chest. Right ear. Right shoulder. Allowing yourself to investigate here. And then eventually over to the other side. Left shoulder. Left ear. Left shoulder. Nice. Coming back. Inhale. And then exhale. Just let your elbows go wide. Forehead rests on the top of the hands. Bend the knees. Reverse windshield wipers. Legs side to side. Nice. Releasing the feet. Slide the palms underneath the shoulders. We'll take a few rounds of rolling cobra. Drawing the elbows into the rib cage. And as you inhale, begin to press through the hands and lift the heart up. And then lead with the heart lower down. Keep the head heavy as you lift up. Chin to the chest. And then exhale. Draw the heart forward and lower down. Let's do this two more times. Chin to the chest as you lift up. And then exhale. Attractioning the upper back forward to the floor. Inhale.

Lifting up. Rolling up. Exhale. Slow. Rolling down. Feeling the belly, the chest. Last one. Now lifting up. And exhale. Lowering down. As you're ready, press up onto the knees. And back into an active child's pose. So slow. Begin to kind of walk the fingers back. Keep the hips towards the heels. And then sit back towards Vajrasana. Walking the hands back. You might stay here. Chin to the chest. You might roll the shoulders down the back. And lift up through the heart. Chin might stay into the chest. It might open. Maybe drop back. Chin to the chest. Lead with the heart. Slowly walk your way out. Hands release. Fingers spread downward facing dog. Walking it off. Peppling the feet. From down dog, lower the knees. We'll come into puppy pose. Walk the hands far out in front of you. And then hips over the knees. And then drawing the heart towards the floor. You might kind of play with it and adjust so that it feels like your hips are over your knees. I think mine are. Standing. You might feel an intense stretch and opening through your shoulders. Nice. Okay.

And then to come out, it's a little awkward. Bring your hands back and press your way. Take a moment. Sit in Vajrasana. You can shake out the arms a little bit. Okay. Setting up for a dolphin dog. Bring your forearms back to the floor. It depends on the interlace. This morning I'm going to bring my hands together like in a prayer shape. Bring your hands around your elbows. Measure off and place them how you like. Tuck the toes and begin to lift the hips up towards the sky. Keep the knees bent here. And maybe play with walking the feet towards the head, towards the shoulders. If your hands are together, press the hands together. You feel the outer lats engaged. Finding that ease in the neck and this inversion without putting any weight on the wrists. We have the head below the heart. All that work through the shoulders. Breathing. Nice. When you're ready, lower the knees. Sit back for a moment, child. Pose. Arms might rest alongside the body. Nice. When you're ready, we'll take it in to thread the needle with the shoulders. So come back into your tabletop. Reach that right arm up to the sky and then thread it underneath your left hand. And keep going so you're really sliding that right shoulder blade underneath. And press a little bit with that left hand to help facilitate the twist. And you're on the side of the right head. Make sure the neck feels comfortable. You can stay with this if you want to extend your left foot. So your left foot is right out in line with the hip. You can play with that. You can stay here. Maybe the top left arm reaches overhead. You roll towards the floor. Maybe you revolve the ribcage. Arm might reach towards the sky, finding that internal rotation and maybe there's a wrap. Breathing. Okay. And then releasing the left hand underneath the shoulder. Keep the weight of your head heavy. And then press with that left hand. Come back up into tabletop and draw that left foot in. Nice. We'll find that on the other side. Reach the left arm up. Thread it underneath the right and just keep going. So you're really drawing that left shoulder blade under the back. And then pressing the right hand into the floor of it as you twist open. Breathing. Staying with this or reaching the top arm to the sky. Maybe overhead. And if you want to extend through your right leg, you might do that. So your foot is out in line with the right hip. Right arm might reach up, finding that internal rotation and then wrapping around the back. Finding the left thigh there. Rolling open. Breathing. Notice if you're collapsing into the left hip a little bit, finding that balance through the legs. And exhale, releasing your right hand down underneath the shoulder.

Keep the head heavy. Press with the right hand. Come all the way back into your tabletop and then draw the right knee in. If it's extended, a few rounds of cat-cow here. Nice. And then one last child's pose. Hips drop back. You might wobble a rock a little side to side. Feeling the support beneath you. Feeling energy through the shoulders and the arms. Taking your time to roll up towards Vajrasana. We'll find one final seat together, the Sukhasana. So if you have a blanket, you might grab it and find your seat. So it might be a simple cross-leg seat. Settling in and then folding forward. You might rock a little bit side to side. Releasing into the forward fold. From the forward fold, walking the arms over to the right, over that right knee. Come up onto the fingertips. Inhale, lengthen your spine so you're attractioning your heart over that right knee. And then exhale, fold. Releasing the head. Feeling the stretch through your left hip. And then continue over to the right. So your right forearm finds the floor. Let yourself tip over and then stretch the left arm towards the right, up out and over. As you come into the side bend shape, play with letting your left sitting bone, hip and knee draw towards the floor. Find that ease through your neck. Maybe you revolve, maybe you round. Breathing. Making sounds. To come up, take a look down, let the inhale carry you all the way up. Wow. And then just take a moment to notice and observe. Feeling the skull float over the spine. Clearing breath. As you're ready, lean back and just switch the cross of your ankles. And forward fold. Hinge at the hips. A little side to side. Releasing. Often times I like to sway a little bit in the forward fold. From here, walking it over to the left. Walking the arms over towards that left knee. Come up onto your fingertips. And with the fingertips, just kind of draw the heart forward, feeling that traction. And then exhale, rounding over, folding over your left knee. Feeling that increasing flavor sensation through your right hip. Softening the jaw. Continue the journey over to the left, coming onto your left forearm. Reaching the top arm overhead. And reach through your right fingertips. Nice. Finding that side bend. And then play with drawing your right hip, sitting bone knee towards the floor. You might stay with this. You might move a little bit, rounding down towards the floor.

Maybe revolving or brightening up towards the sky a bit. Breathing. Softening. Opening. Okay. Gradually, as you're ready, take a look down. Let the inhale carry you all the way up. Wherever up may be. Take a moment to pause and observe how you feel. Taking a few moments here to sit together before we move into our day. Finding a comfortable seat. You're not in one already. Drawing the shoulders up around the ears and then softening them down the back. Notice the quality through your hands, your mouth. Kneading back ever so slightly. And ease up through your neck. You might stay here for a bit longer. If you'd like to close your practice, join the hands together. Namaste. Thank you.


Jenny S
1 person likes this.
So gooey and yummy! 🧘🏻‍♂️🍯❤️
Alana Mitnick
Good morning, Jenny! I like to call this practice "A Cup of YOGA." So glad you enjoyed. xoA
Eric K
2 people like this.
Wonderful. I so appreciate your pace, tone, and instructions. Morning practices are good all day!
Alana Mitnick
Thank you Eric. I'm so glad to hear that the practices resonate with you, and are serving you throughout your day! Namaste, Alana
Amanda W
Good one for the joints.
Alana Mitnick
Hi Amanda! I'm so glad the practice felt good on your joints. That's the idea. :) xoA
Glenford N
Thanks Alana. I felt my hips opening and subtle sensations all around my body. Hips pelvis and groin open and floating. Namaste.
Alana Mitnick
Great observations, Glenford. Stay with those subtle sensations. Namaste, Alana
Julia V
Totally chilled out. That final side stretch was a revelation! Thank you so much - just what I needed on a slow creaky morning. Namaste
Alana Mitnick
AWEsome Julia! Best news. xoA
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