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Season 4 - Episode 8

Shine Bright

30 min - Practice


Emily guides us through a vinyasa practice designed to help connect to the heart space. We move through a series of core strengtheners, balancing postures, and back-bending postures to find more brightness in our day.
What You'll Need: Mat

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Welcome to your practice. In this practice we'll be connecting to our heart and shining bright. So let's begin seated together. If you like you can sit on a block like I am and we'll find a way to sit comfortably tall, stacking your heart over your hips, nice long spine. And we'll begin with the left hand on the heart and then the right hand on the belly. And you're welcome to close your eyes or gaze towards the floor in front of you about three feet. And it's a nice soft gaze if you have your eyes open. We're going to drop into the breath and so this is a three-part breath. You'll inhale into your right hand on your belly, up into the hand on your chest. Then as you exhale the chest releases, the belly releases back. Again inhale into the belly, into the heart, then exhaling releasing the chest and the belly. So we'll do two more like that inhaling into the belly, into the heart, feeling that sense of expansion and connection. Exhale releasing the belly and the heart back. Last one. Inhale, chest expands and then exhale, gently releasing the belly back. Beautiful and then when you're ready you can lean up and off your block and set that to the side. And we'll begin with a reverse tabletop. So feet are hip-width distance. You can turn your fingertips out for this. The elbows will straighten as you inhale and you lift your hips up. Then you're welcome to gaze up, little circles, little mini circles in one direction and then the other. And then on your next breath in the hips lift. Exhale, take your hips to the mat. It's like a half tabletop. So you'll inhale, lift your shins off the mat and the arms are nice and long. So we'll be going back and forth between this position and the reverse tabletop. So take a breath here, hands down, feet down, inhale, lift your hips. So this is your breath in. Exhale, hips down, shins parallel to the floor. So that's the exhale. Let's keep going. Inhale, hands down, shine the heart. Exhale, hips land, half boat, Ardha Navasana. Two more, hands down, lift it up and help. Exhale, hips down, half boat. One more, hands down, hips lift, inhale. Exhale, Ardha shins are parallel. Beautiful. And then from here, you'll hug your knees into your chest. You'll come to lie down on your back. So when you're ready, you're on your back, knees to chest.

And then we'll bring the legs towards the sky. Now if you can straighten your legs, awesome. You're also welcome to keep the knees bent. Let's cross the ankles. Inlace your hands behind your head. Now from here, you'll inhale, lift the chest and keep your chest as lifted as you can. As you exhale, you'll lift your feet straight up. Inhale, the hips go down. Exhale, feet up. Inhale, exhale, feet up. Inhale, switching sides. Left ankle on top. Inhale, take a deep breath. Exhale, feet straight up. Inhale, hips down, exhale. So a little heat here. Last one, feet go up. Inhale, releasing. Go ahead, draw your knees into your chest. Give yourself a hug. Nice work. Create a little bit of heat so we can shine it out. Now from here, extend your right leg and then you'll extend your left leg to the floor. You can actually let it rest there for a moment. Interlace your hands together. You're going to take Vira Mudra. You're going to point your mudra outside the right leg on this move here. Go ahead, hover the left leg off the mat. Take a deep breath. Inhale. Exhale, you're going to reach towards the outer edge of your right leg. And inhale, you'll come down, point the mudra up. Exhale, reach. Two more. Inhale.

Exhale. Three. Inhale. Exhale. Four. Let's do a bonus. Inhale. Come down. Exhale. Reach. Beautiful. Inhale. Come down. Lift your left leg. Keep the interlaced, your Vira Mudra. Slowly lower the right leg so it hovers off the mat. Inhale. Take a deep breath. Exhale. Reach it out. Inhale. Come down. That's one. Exhale. Two. Inhale. Exhale. Reach for three. Inhale. Come down. Exhale. Four. One more. Inhale. Exhale. Reach. Beautiful. Inhale. Come down. Exhale. Hug your knees into your chest. Ah, nice work. From here, we'll rock and roll our way up to see them. So rock and roll, and then you'll make your way into downward facing dog. Coming onto your knees, tucking your toes, lifting your hips. Downward facing dog. Maybe take a moment to pedal out the feet. You can really bend your right knee and splay that right knee in. And then switching sides. Left knee splays in. Reaching that right heel towards the mat. And then finding your center in your downward facing dog, shining it out through the front of the heart. Arms are strong. Next breath in. The right leg sweeps to the sky. Inhale. Exhale. Step your foot between your hands for crescent lunge or high lunge. The back heels lifted. Inhale.

Arms reach to the sky. So this is what we're going to do. We're going to inhale here. And this is a moment where we'll actually spring off the back leg and draw the knee to the chest. So on your inhale, create space through the heart. As you exhale, you'll draw the left knee into the chest. The elbows pull back and you can make soft fists with the hands. And then you'll step back with the left leg on your inhale. We'll do two more like that. Exhale. Pull the knee in. Heart spacious. One more. Inhale. Reach it back. Exhale. Draw it in. Now you'll stay here. Grab your left knee and chin. Pause. Get steady. And then using your left hand, you'll place your left foot for tree pose. Find your center. Hands can go to the heart. Now as you inhale, arms go wide. Palms up. Tree. Arms reach up overhead. Big breath here. If you want a little bit more challenge, you can gaze up towards the hands. The hands can connect. Inhale. Hands to heart. Feet step together to touch. Exhale. Let's take our vinyasa. Arms reach up. Inhale. And then leading with the heart as you exhale. Connecting with that center. Inhale. Lifting and lengthening. Exhale. Plant your hands plank. Inhale. Pause and plank. Exhale. Chaturanga or lower slow. Inhale. Upward-facing dog. Exhale. Downward-facing dog. Couple the breath. Now this time you'll bend your right knee. Really display the right knee and left heel goes towards the mat. And then bend your left knee. Right heel reaches towards the mat. And both legs straighten. Inhale.

Shine your left leg high to the sky. Exhale. Step it through. High lunge. Crescent lunge. Nice and steady in the feet. And then on the breath in, arms reach to the sky. Big breath. So getting ready for our transition. Inhale. Create some space. Bend your back knee. Exhale. Draw the right knee up and in. Step it back. Inhale. Crescent. Big lunging step. Exhale. Draw it in. Hug it in. One more. Inhale. Lifting and lengthening through the heart. Exhale. Draw it in. And you'll pause here. Hands interlace around the shin and the knee. Using your right hand you can place the right foot for tree. Hands can begin at the heart. Stay here. Arms out. Palms up. Inhale. Arms reach up to the sky. Maybe. Palms touch. Gazing up. And then hands gently back to the heart. And then releasing your foot down. I'm gonna shake it out for a moment. We'll step our feet two fists width apart. Hands to the hips. This is called Padagusthasana. So as you inhale, you'll lift up through the heart. The elbows can even go back. So shining the heart out. As you exhale, you'll fold in. Bend your knees if you need to. And then piece fingers.

You piece out fingers. Grab your big toes. Inhale. Lifting and lengthening. Again, knees can be bent. Exhale. Folding in. Shining the back of the heart. Elbows drop back. So as we connect to our center with the breath, we can shine it out authentically through the heart. So really staying connected to your inhale and your exhale. Now as you inhale next, halfway lift, take your hands to the mat. Release the toes. And you'll bend the knees. Toe heel your feet to the edges of your mat. So edge to edge. Heels turn in. Toes turn out. Malasana. So yogic squat. You'll sit down, lifting the heart. Couple of breaths here. Enjoying that sense of spaciousness. And then when you're ready, hands go down. Back to the forward fold. So you'll lift your hips. Spin the heels. Heel and ragdoll. Elbows and hands connect. Rock it out side to side. We're going to take one more malasana together. Hands to the mat. Bend your knees. Spin the heels in. Toes out. Yogic squat. Malasana. Couple of breaths. See if you can stay connected to the feet and the foundation while creating space around the heart. Beautiful. And then hands down. Hips lift. Spin the heels out. Ragdoll. Rock it out side to side. Connecting to that inner rhythm of your breath. And then arms release. Bend the knees quite a bit. Roll to standing. Really slow. Coming all the way up.

Beautiful. And you'll step your feet together. Hands at the heart. We're heading into our Eagle Sequence. And so we'll begin with the right foot down. Left foot lifts. Now option one is a half eagle where the left ankle is to the right knee. You can also cactus your arms. Option is to drape the knee and tuck the toes. And then the left arm will candy cane under the right. Again you can hold shoulders instead. If that feels more appropriate, Govindasana pausing here for two. One, three. Now here's our transition. So when you're ready, exhale. Draw the belly back. Inhale. Unwinding and unraveling the knee. And you'll exhale. Reach the leg back. Slowly towards warrior three. And then the arms release and they go to the floor. This is your version of standing split. So I like to say standing splits-ish. So you might take your leg high or keeping it, you know, midway. Use your breath. And then looking down, gently step your big toes to touch. Inhale. Halfway lift. Exhale. Fold in. Inhale. Rise up. Heart leads away. Right. Connect within. Arms reach. Exhale. Hands to the heart. Let's do second side. Left foot's down. Right foot's lifting. Half eagle. If that feels great, you can stay here. You can cactus your arms. Or drape your knee. Maybe the toes tuck. Getting in there. Right elbow under left. Eagle arms. A couple of breaths for two. All three. Now keeping the arms. Exhale. Draw the belly back. Inhale. Unravel. Right knee to chest. And then reaching back with that right leg towards warrior three. When you're ready to release the arms, go ahead. Take the arms and hands to the mat. You'll take that right leg high to the sky. Standing splits-ish. Being in the process of exploring the splits, right? So it's the journey that we're on here together. A couple of breaths. And then the big toes touch. Inhale. Halfway lift. Fold in on your exhale. Just like a sweet fold in. One more halfway lift. Inhale. Arda. Plant your hands. Exhale. Step back to plank.

Nice and clear. Deep breath in. And then on your exhale, we're going to lower all the way down slow to the floor. You'll make a pillow with your hands. Untuck your toes. Rock your hips outside to side. Then we'll bend our knees together and you're just gonna wiper your shins a little side to side for a moment, releasing any tension you might have. And then you'll release those legs to the floor. Go ahead, take your legs wide for this first moment of shalabhasana. It could be about hip-width distance apart, actually. Really feeling into that. And we'll pull the hands back so that your hands are around your waist and the elbows will hug in. Tops or feet are down. So you can adjust the legs and hips if you need to to get a nice connection to the earth. Elbows hug back. As you next inhale, you'll lift the heart and lift the feet for shalabhasana B for two. Stay steady with your breath. Shine it out through the heart. Take a deep inhale. Maybe lift a little bit higher. And then exhale. Lower down. Make your pillow. Forehead down. You can rock your hips side to side. And this time really bring the legs together. Gaze down. Hands pull back. Elbows hug in. Tops or feet are rooting. Now together on your inhale, lift your heart. Lift your feet for one. Two. Now you can stay here if it seems accessible. You'll reach back with your hands. Interlace the hands behind the low back or the hips. And you'll use that to lift up through the heart. Take a deep breath. And then slowly release down.

Pillow. Forehead. Bend your knees. Let's wipe our shins. Beautiful. And this time you'll release your legs. Let's go corner to corner. So top of the foot down. Feel those corners of your mat. And this time the hands come behind or underneath the shoulder. We're heading towards cobra. Elbows hug in. Now as you next inhale, pelvis down, low belly tawns. Little baby cobra. Little baby cobra as you lift through the heart. You don't have to go as far as you usually go. But instead think of pelvis down, belly in, sternum forward. Take a breath here and howl. And then exhale. Slowly release. Make your pillow. Rock it out. Side to side. So really shining from that center. And this time the hands come under the shoulders. Let's bring the legs a bit more parallel. Bhujangasana. Exhale. Draw the belly back. Inhale. Lift up through the heart. Now you'll lift to your degree. So as far as feels comfortable for you, you'll find your way up. Tops the thighs root down. The pelvis roots down. The low belly hugs in. The sternum moves forward. Elbows draw back. And then finding that expansion through the heart. Right. Shining it bright through the front of the heart. Big breath in. And slowly making your way down. Fellow. If you'd like bend your knees, wipe your shins. Let's take one more. This is the magic number three. Cobra. And really thinking about the the center of the body. So as you release your legs to the mat, as you inhale and lengthen, you'll exhale. See like you can feel like you're hugging the midline as you then press your way up and in. So there's a sense of drawing the energy to the center up through that central channel. Up through the heart. And shining it out. Shining bright through the heart. If you like gazing up. And then slowly making your way down. You can tuck your toes. Push to your knees. And then we'll make our way to downward facing dog. Tucking toes. Lifting hips. Down dog is a counter pose. Pushing the mat away. Inner thighs roll back. On your next breath in, sweep your right leg high to the sky. Pigeon pose. Right side. So step your right knee towards your right wrist. And you'll release down onto your right hip. Now this is a great place to find that block once again that we used at the beginning of our practice if you like. Otherwise really rooting into that right shin. Inhale. Lift the heart. And then you'll exhale. Walk your way forward. You might find your way on your forearms. You're welcome to make that pillow once again and drop into your breath. So allowing the breath to guide us. Keep rooting your shin into the mat, into the floor. That's going to keep that sense of spaciousness arriving in the hip. So bringing the energy into the hip and the breath. Connecting within. And see what you can let go of here. Create space in your eyes and behind the eyes. Now on your next inhale you'll slowly walk your way up. And you'll lean to the right quite a bit. We're heading to Ardhamatsi and Drasanas. You'll bring your left leg around and step it over that right knee and shin. Take the left arm behind you. Inhale. Right arm reaches up. Twisting towards your bent left knee.

Couple of breaths here. I like to gaze towards my left foot but you can also gaze past your left shoulder. Shining bright through the heart. Then inhale to center. Lean back to the right. Take the left leg back. Tuck those toes. Downward facing dog. So coming into down dog. Walk it out. Pedal it out. Splay the left knee in. Right heel towards floor. Splay the right knee in. Left heel towards the floor. Inhale to center. Left leg sweeps high. Second side. Exhale. Step your left knee forward. Again this can be a place where you use your block. Every side's different. So you might want to check in with yourself there. And really rooty into the bottom shin. Inhale. Lifting and lengthening. And then exhaling. Walking our way in. Again the forearms can be a place to, you know, really steep in the pose. Or you might walk your way farther down. You can make the pillow with your hands. Forehead down. Don't forget about the back foot. The back leg. Don't forget about rooting into that front left shin to create the space in the left side. Staying with your breath. Staying connected to the back leg. The back of the heart. Lengthen the spine. Keep rooting into that left shin. So as we stay connected to the breath, we're able to shine our inner essence. Right? So we're really shining it out from our center. Now on the next inhale. Lifting your chin. Slowly walking up and in. You'll lean to the left and then right leg swings out and around. So artimatsi on the second side. Find a good foundation for your right foot and then the right hand finds its way behind you. Inhale. Take the left arm up and then we'll twist towards your right leg. Couple the breaths. Lengthen the spine. Spinning open through the heart. Again you can also gaze towards the right foot if that feels better for your neck. One more breath here in hell. Twisting on your exhale. Inhale the center. So you'll unravel. Lean to the left. Step it back. Downward facing dog. Knees find their way to the mat and we'll come to lie down on our backs. So you'll lie down. Feet will be hip width apart. Knees bent. You'll take your feet and walk them as close to your hips as you comfortably can. Sometimes it feels great to see if you can touch your heel or your ankle. It's a good space indicator for you. Now as you inhale, lengthen the spine. Exhale. Begin to lift the hips off the mat and then use the inhale to lift the hips. This is a gentle bridge. You're welcome to interlace the hands if you like. Power the legs. Lift through the heart. Rooting those femurs back in. One more breath here. Heart towards your chin and then release the grip of the arms. Heels left. Slowly roll down. Nice work. And so take your feet edge to edge on your mat and we'll wiper the knees side to side.

So the wiper right. You can tee out your arms if you like. Wiper left. Go to the right and then the left. And our next breath in, we'll take the knees to the right. You'll pause there. This is another place where sometimes it feels good to adjust the feet so you can walk that right foot in a bit if that's helpful. You'll bring the arms up over if that feels great. You can also hold the right wrist with the left hand and twist towards the left foot or lean towards the left foot. Stretching into the shoulder. And gently release. And we'll switch sides. Knees lift. Nice and gentle. Knees up and over to the left. Again the left foot can walk in to get a little bit more space. Right ankle or right hand to left wrist. Reaching up and over towards the right foot. Side body long. As you inhale, release the grip. Bring your knees up and then shift yourself into a setup for Savasana. You're welcome to shake out your legs. Shake out your upper body. Let it go. Arms are wide. Palms are up. Maybe again lift the heart to adjust what you need to adjust. Take a deep breath and inhale. Exhale. Let something go. You can keep your hands wide. Allow the hands to soften their grip. Allow yourself to release back into the earth for Savasana. Begin to deepen your breath. Feel the fullness of your inhale. The letting go of the exhale. Beautiful cycle of the breath and when you're ready to bring motion back to the hands and feet. You're welcome to do that. Maybe reaching out with the arms and legs. Shining out through the heart. As you exhale, maybe you bend one knee and roll to one side. We'll push our weight to our comfortable seat. So join me when you're ready. You're welcome to grab that block that we began with. So you might sit on the edge of the block. Finding a seat. We'll use a mudra. It's called a triangle mudra. The thumbs are together. The pointy fingers are together. It's this beautiful mudra that we place right in front of the heart. And you're welcome to close the eyes. And imagine as you inhale, you're drawing energy through the mudra into the heart space on a Hatha chakra. As you exhale, reading out through the heart through the mudra. This sweet connection to our innermost self. A few more breaths. Drawing energy in. Reading out. So the more we connect to our essence, the more we can show up as ourselves, right?

Authentically in all the ways that we show up in the world. And when you're ready, bringing the hands together at the front of the heart and Anjali mudra. Take a moment to honor yourself for getting yourself here to your practice today. Thank you so much for sharing your practice today. Namaste.


2 people like this.
Always a pleasure to practice with you 🙏🏻❤️
1 person likes this.
What a lovely way to begin Sunday morning.  Triangle mudra connection is wonderful.
1 person likes this.
Christel thank you for practicing with me-- isn't that mudra amazing??? ❤️
Jenny The pleasure is all mine. I really love having you as a part of our community here~ 🙏🏽
1 person likes this.
Emily, you are awesome! I really enjoy practicing with you! Thank you!
Maya You're so awesome, too! Thank you for practicing with me, and us!! So glad you are here!! xo
1 person likes this.
That was feel good fun! Thank you
Martha K Thank you for flowing with us!

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