Good Morning Yoga Artwork
Season 7 - Episode 5

Healing the Hips

35 min - Practice


Savor finding spaciousness within the hips and pelvis, becoming aware of and releasing any tension as Alana leads us through today's strengthening and nourishing practice, including a Warrior flow sequence, Goddess Stance, and Malasana.  You will feel open and at ease.
What You'll Need: Mat, Blanket, Block

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Good morning, how are you feeling? Our practice today will focus on our hips, strengthening our hips as well as releasing and becoming aware of any tension through the pelvis and the hips. So we'll start on the floor and then we'll gradually make our way up to standing with some sun salutations and back down. To find your way into a bada konasana shape, you might sit up on a blanket and have a block nearby for the end of our practice and just wobbling into your sitting bones, bring the soles of the feet together and the knees wide and bring the heels just further away from the pelvis. So this is more of a kind of a yin inspired butterfly or bada konasana.

And then just taking your time to ease into your forward fold, so just feeling into your hips and gradually leaning in, softening through the face and the jaw. You might even take your thumbs and just kind of thumb and wake up the soles of the feet, giving yourself a bit of a foot massage. And if and as it feels right for you, you might gradually release into the forward fold. You might lean a little bit from side to side here and maybe you're surrendering or releasing the weight of the head, the arms. Just notice what you're working with this morning and most likely, especially first thing in the morning, there tends to be a kind of a dull, achy, maybe warm stretch through the back of the body, the spine, the low back, the sacrum, the hips.

And here in this shape, let's take a nice full breath into the back of the body. And then with the exhale, and softening through the face, the jaw, just a few more moments here, nice, how we approach our practice is everything. So just allowing your approach to be really soft and gentle, more of an offering, nice. When you feel ready, just take your time to slowly round your way up, nice full breath in as you sit up, welcoming the day and notice how you feel just after a few moments there. From here, we'll bring the sole of that right foot in and stretch out through our left leg.

And then from here, we'll interlace our fingers and just stretch the arms up towards the sky and keep a soft bend through the elbows, grounding through your sitting bones, reaching up through the spine, maybe lifting up through the chest. Let's take a nice full breath in together. Your exhale, release your hands, spinal twist to the right, nice and easy, left hand on that right thigh, right fingertips might reach behind you or you might bend the elbow and find a little wrap there. Inhale, feel the spine draw into your back as the chest lifts a little bit more and exhale just a gentle twist to the right. Few breaths here, you might flex your left ankle, just bringing a little bit of energy into that left leg, you feel that lift from the lower belly, beautiful.

And then just slow, stay in the twist and just let your head come forward and maybe it would feel good to stretch over that left shoulder, ah, good, and then just unwind the body. We're going to slide the left hand down the leg, any amount, inhale, reach your right arm up towards the sky, let it feel nice as you open through the side body and we're just stretching it up out and over, sliding the hand down the leg, reaching that right arm up. Ah, I love this stretch, how does it feel for you, right? Finding a place for your neck feels comfortable always, a few full breaths here. Beautiful, with the inhale, reach up with that top arm, exhale, release and bring the hand, that right hand behind you and with an inhale, lift yourself up, coming into that stargazer shape, opening the hips, waking up the front body and then exhale, just slow, release the hips down, nice.

And then when you're ready, just lean back and carefully free that right leg, you might shake it out and we'll bring the sole of that left foot in, closing the knee, bring that left foot into the right thigh and again, interlacing the fingers, inhale, stretch the arms up, kind of wiggle, lengthen and finding that ease through the neck, full breath in here, exhale, spinal twist to the left, right hand on that left thigh and right fingers behind you or maybe you're wrapping it this morning, little juice and energy through that right foot, inhale to lengthen, exhale, twisting to the left, a few breaths here, nice, stay in the twist and just slow, let the head move forward, maybe you're stretching over that right shoulder, nice, inhale, exhale, let the body unwind, slide the right hand down the leg, any amount, inhale, reach that left arm up towards the sky, again you might wiggle and lengthen, making a bit more room and space for yourself and then just go ahead and stretch the arm up out and over as it would feel good, be grounding through your left sitting bone as you find a bit more length, easy out through the neck, breathing into the ribs, you might notice the side feels a little or a lot different, amazing, inhale when you're ready, reach up, ground through that left hand and inhale, float up, reach that right arm up towards the sky, let the hips open, let the spine lengthen, nice beautiful stretch here, exhale, mindfully lower the hips down, nice and then free the left leg, carefully shake the legs out a little bit and we're going to draw the soles of the feet down to the floor and just transition into a tabletop, so just find your way there and you might bring a blanket underneath the knees, spread the fingers wide, we'll ease into our cat-cow, warming the spine with the exhale, let your back round and stretch and then inhale, move into your extension, exhale, curl and round, stretch your back, hips towards the heels and inhale, moving into your extension, a couple more rounds with the breath, you might soften your gaze inward, feeling into the movement of your spine from the tailbone all the way up, good, next time you round your spine, find your way back into a wide child's pose, let the knees go wide, sink your hips back towards your heels, taking a few moments to settle here, feeling into the pelvis, the hips, nice, stretching the arms forward, coming back, knees about hips width apart, we're going to circle the hips to the right, so we're going to just transfer the weight forward and then circle the hips to the left, making some circles with the hips in one direction, back and forward and back and forward, couple rounds here, circling the hips and then we'll circle in the other direction, slow, mindfully waking up the outer hips, feeling the weight move through the hands, breathing, nice and then just settling back into child's pose, as you're ready, round your way back up into table, spread the fingers wide apart, we'll tuck our toes under for down dog, nice and easy down dog, you might come high up onto the balls of the feet, stretching the toes and then go ahead and bend your right knee a lot, just let that left calf and heel stretch down towards the floor, nice and then bend the left knee and just stretch that right calf and heel down to the floor, and do that a few more times, just walking off through the feet, pedaling the legs out and as you're ready, just walking the feet towards the hands, soft bend through the knees, forward fold, hands might find the elbows, you might sway for a few moments side to side, releasing the back of the neck, when you feel ready, bend your knees, chin into the chest, we'll roll up through our spine, head last, tap into the strength of your legs and just slowly round and roll up, stacking the bones, feeling your heart, feeling the shoulders, feeling the head, let the arms open, exhale down into the floor, find that ease, that resiliency up through the heart and the neck, moments here settling, and then joining the hands together we'll move through some sun salutations, just to build some heat and energy, spreading the toes, feeling that quality of length up through your spine, aware of the quality of your breath, and as you're ready with an inhale, let the arms circle up to the sky, feeling that length, exhale, forward fold, swan dive, releasing the head and the arms, inhale half arch, let your spine lengthen, exhale, bend your knees, plant your hands, step your right foot back, step your left foot back, come into your plank pose, reach back through the heels, lengthen forward through the heart, the crown of the head, we'll lower the knees, keep the elbows in, lower under the belly for cobra, with your inhale, lifting up through the chest, waking up the back and the spine, exhale, lead with the heart, lower down, tuck the toes under, press up and back, downward facing dog, three breaths here, and you might walk it off, pedal your feet, and as you're ready, bend the knees, walk the feet forward towards the hands, inhale, half arch to lengthen, exhale, forward fold, bend the knees, inhale, the arms up to the sky, exhale, release the arms, hands together at the heart, second round, inhale, arms reach up, lengthen, exhale, forward fold, releasing the head, inhale, half arch, lengthen the spine, exhale, bend the knees, step the left foot back, step the right foot back, plank, lower the knees, lower onto the belly for cobra, inhale, lifting up cobra, wide through the collarbones, warming the back, exhale, lead with the heart, lower down, tuck the toes under, press up and back, downward facing dog, taking a few breaths here, and then adding on from here, inhale, reach your right leg up to the sky, go ahead and bend your knee and let your right hip open, let that feel nice, feeling that big stretch in the back of your left leg, rounding evenly through the hands, the shoulders, stretch the right leg back up to the sky, square the hip, we'll inhale together, exhale, knee to nose and we'll step it through between the hands, coming up into a warrior two, rooting on the outer edge of the foot, sweep that left arm up and sweep the right arm up, taking a few moments to settle in so that right heel is in line with the left inner arch, feeling the rib cage float over the pelvis, rooting through the outer edge of the right foot, beautiful or reverse, slide the back hand down the back leg, inhale, reach that right arm up, feel that whole side body length again, beautiful, exhale, side angle, right form onto that right thigh, sweep the left arm overhead, letting that left side body lengthen, inhale, come back into your reverse or peaceful warrior lengthening and then exhale back into side angle, beautiful, inhale, reaching up again, reverse and exhale, side angle, we'll hold for three breaths here, nice and long through the side body, breathing, beautiful and then slow, releasing your left hand down, we're going to bring the hands on the inside of that right foot, toe heel that right foot a little wider, spin onto the ball of your back foot, coming into a lunge here with the hands on the inside of that right foot, we're going to lower that left knee down to the floor, with an inhale draw the hips back, we're going to do a little bit of a half split here lengthening and then exhale, we're going to bend that front knee and come into kind of a low lizard lunge, right, so as you arrive just let yourself gently lean a little bit side to side, feeling into that back left thigh, the hip flexor, that right hip, usually like to turn that right foot out a little bit, just letting yourself kind of explore and investigate and then maybe, maybe you're coming onto the forearms, releasing the head, really breathing into where you feel the stretch or sensation, you might stay low, you might prefer a little bit of a twisting action, bringing the left hand to the floor, bringing that right hand onto the right thigh and you're twisting towards the right, nice, maybe lengthening and lifting through the spine and the heart, and just slow, as you're ready draw your hips back, kind of reorganize your leg there, half split, come onto that right heel and lengthen, feeling the hamstrings, nice, and then slow, bend that right knee, hands frame the foot, tuck the back toes under, then we'll lift that right leg up and back, let the hip open again, nice, you might even circle out the ankle and then lower that right foot down to the floor, down dog, as you're ready inhale forward into a plank pose again, strong through the legs, draw the deep low belly into the spine, exhale you might lower the knees or lower through a chaturanga, inhale to a cobra or maybe upward dog would feel nice, exhale navel to spine, downward facing dog, as you're ready lift the left leg up to the sky, bend the knee, let the hip open, stretching through the back of that right leg, opening through the left hip, and then stretch that left leg back up to the sky, square the hips, take a big inhale, exhale, knee to nose, step it through, warrior two, pivot onto the outer edge of that right foot and let that right arm sweep you up, settling into your warrior for a few moments, left heel in line with the right inner arch, shoulders softening down the back, opening through that left hip, on an inhale, sweep that top arm back, right arm slides down the back of the leg, reverse, and then exhale extended side angle, left forearm onto that left thigh, right arm sweeps overhead, feeling that right side body lengthen, strong through the legs, inhale come back up into your reverse warrior, opening through that left side, and exhale side angle, left forearm onto that left thigh, let's do that two more times, inhale rise up, reverse, exhale extend, inhale reverse, and exhale extended side angle, left forearm onto that left thigh, that arm sweeps over the ear, the opening and revolving the ribcage in the lungs, breathing, beautiful and then sweep the top arm down, spin onto the ball, the back foot, you might toe heel that left foot just a little wider as you bring the hands on the inside of that left leg, and then lower the right knee down, and let's inhale and just draw the hips back, get that left leg a little bit of a break here, little half split action, and then bend that left knee, bring the hands on the inside, and then just let yourself kind of explore the landscape of sensation through the back hip, and through to the front hip, so little side to side, and being mindful and gentle with your knee, notice where you can relax through the face, nice. You might stay with this, you might lower onto your forearms, and really with this quality of listening, you might stay with this or walk yourself back up, right hand on the floor, left hand onto that thigh, maybe there's just a gentle twist as you open, oh that feels really nice, how does it feel for you, and you might lengthen up through the spine a little bit if you're in a twist, nice. And then take your time to get out of there, just slow, draw your hips back, just gently toe heel that front foot into the midline, flex the foot, we'll find that bit of a hamstring stretch, a little release there, nice, and then slow bend the left knee, hands frame the foot, tuck the back toes, look the back leg, step back downward dog, and sweep that left leg up to the sky, let the hip open, stretch it out, circle the ankle, and then just lower that left foot down to meet the right, from your down dog, inhale forward into a plank pose, reorganize through your legs, and then lower chaturanga or on the knees, inhale to cobra or upward dog, exhale downward dog, taking a few breaths in your downward dog, and then walking the feet towards the hands, inhale half arch, lengthen, exhale bend the knees forward fold, as you're ready, inhale press through the feet, circle the arms up, reach beyond the fingertips, drop the tailbone down, and exhale, bring the hands together at the heart, taking a few moments here to let everything settle, and ground, nice, okay, we'll turn wide on our mat and bring our feet out, our legs out wide, coming into a horse stance or a goddess stance, and turn the toes out, heels in, feel how you can kind of root through the outer edges of the feet and feel that opening through the hips, right as you sink down, bring the hands onto the legs for a moment here, settling in, nice, and then bring the hands to the heart, again saw through the face, we'll reach the arms out wide, and then wrap the right hand over the left, so you're giving yourself a little bit of a hug here, you might stay here, you might find the eagle wrap through the arms, and then just rounding the spine a little bit, drawing the elbows in, and then lifting up through the chest, lifting up through the elbows, taking a nice full breath into the back of the heart, the shoulder blades, nice, and from the eagle wrap give yourself a hug again, and then open the arms out wide, and then wrap the left arm on top or right, give yourself a little bit of a hug here, you might stay here, or maybe you're finding the eagle wrap through the arms, and it's amazing how the shoulders are so different, right, and you might round a little bit, and you might lift up, breathing into the back of the body, give yourself a hug, inhale, reach the arms out again, and then hands find the legs, we'll press through the feet, lift up a little bit, and then exhale, twist and dip to the right left, shoulder drops forward, looking over the right shoulder, press through the feet, inhale, come up, exhale to the left, inhale up, exhale right, inhale up, exhale left, nice, inhale, come up, bring the feet in, heels out a little wider, reach the arms out, roll the shoulders forward, we'll interlace the fingers behind the back, inhale, lift up through the chest, exhale, hinge at the hips, navel to spine forward fold, maybe there's a soft bend in your knees, releasing the head, stretching the arms up out and over, easy in the neck, shoulders lifting away from the ears, beautiful, slow, release the hands down by the sacrum, we'll walk the hands out for a bit of a hammock here, nice release, draw the hips away from the hands, let the heart soften down towards the floor, easy through the neck, beautiful, nice, take your time, walk the hands underneath the shoulders, we're going to toe heel our feet towards each other, coming towards the melasana, a bit of a squat here, any amount that feels right for your body, your knees, your hips, settling, sinking down, just feeling this downward flow of energy, it's a big stretch for the hips, the knees, nice release through the low back, then mindfully find your way down to the floor, so in whatever fashion feels right for you, nice, slow, safely come on down, nice, and then we're going to stretch our legs out, coming into a staff pose or dandasana, take a few moments settling from here, you might grab your blanket and bring it underneath you, a little bit of height, feels nice, and then just take a few moments here, feeling the spine lengthen, energizing through the legs, and then forward fold, nice, slow, easy, releasing through the spine, you might bend the knees if you'd like to do that, inhale to lengthen, and exhale, forward fold, stretching the back, stretching the back of the legs and the hamstrings, nice, slowly take your time, roll your way up, and we'll bring that right foot in, let the hip open and come into a jhanu shishasana, so bring the sole of that right foot towards the left inner thigh, squaring the hips, you might stay right here, you might hinge at the hips and just slowly begin to walk the arms forward, I like to use my, come up onto the fingertips and kind of suction cut through the fingers, finding that length and traction through the spine, and then exhale, gently folding forward, you might send the breath wide into the back ribs, the back body, feel how your left lung and rib cage can draw back, when you feel ready just slow, roll your way up, bring the right hand outside of that right knee, bring that right sole of the foot to the floor, moving into a twist, inhale, reach the left arm up, exhale, twist to the right, wrap the left hand around your right leg, right fingertips behind you, inhale, find that lift and lengthen through your spine, exhale, twist to the right, and keep some energy through that left leg and foot, beautiful breaths here, and wringing out the spine, and then just slow, let yourself unwind, stretch the legs out, shake them out for a moment, and then we'll bring the sole of that left foot up, let the hip open, left sole of the foot towards the right inner thigh, and then slowly beginning to hinge forward any amount, pause when you first feel it, that's key, then you might stay under your fingertips and with an inhale just draw the heart forward, so you feel that, again that length and traction happening, stay here or just slowly release into the sensation, and feel how the right lung and rib cage can drop back as you deepen into the fold, keeping that bit of internal rotation through the right thigh and foot, nice, few more breaths here into the back body, and then just slow, take your time to roll up, bring the left hand outside of the left knee, bring the sole of that foot down to the floor, inhale, reach the right arm up, feel that length and exhale, twist to the left, wrap the right hand around the left leg, ground through the sitting bones, inhale, lengthen, creating space, exhale, gentle twist, and a few breaths here, a little energy through that right leg and foot, and take your time to slowly unwind, stretch out through that left leg, shake the legs out, we're going to transition onto our back and bring a block under our sacrum, so now would be a good time to grab your block, I'm going to do that, well set up for bridge pose, so bring your heels in line with your sitting bones, arms down alongside the body, let's just take one round of bridge together without the block, so as you're ready, inhale, exhale, curl the tailbone under, press through the feet, lift the pelvis up, just feel that internal rotation through the thigh bones, lifting, palms might press down into the floor if it would feel good to roll and tuck your shoulders under and interlace, you might go with that, lengthening through the eyes, really feeling the outer hips and glutes engaged, see if you can relax some of the effort around your tailbone, you might even bring your hands underneath your kidneys, underneath the back of your pelvis, low back area, feeling the chest open, beautiful, and we'll roll down slowly, releasing upper back, mid back, low back and sacrum, big full breath in, exhale everything, second round we'll bring the block under our sacrum, press through the feet, lift up, bring the block on that first setting, nice, so the block is around the lower two thirds of the sacrum area and then from here drawing the knees in and then stretching the legs up towards the sky if that would feel nice, making any adjustments here, arms might stretch alongside the body, nice little juice and energy through the legs, through the toes, and then letting the upper body soften, letting the face relax, nice and wide between the eyebrows, kind of receiving the benefits of the inversion here, the blood, the energy draining down from the feet and ankles into the legs and the pelvis, the heart, the brain. Just beginning to allow the mind to relax, let your attention begin to soften, might stay here a bit longer, feels pretty awesome. Take your time, when you're ready to release just bend your knees, bring your feet on the floor in the blueprint of your bridge and then press through the feet, lift the pelvis up and just slow push the block out from underneath you and then roll on down, nice, you might draw the knees into your chest from here and rock a little bit from side to side, if a happy baby would feel really nice, you might reach up and bind your feet, or your legs, and maybe there's a little rocking from side to side that wants to happen and just letting your head rock along, nice, super sweet, and then just slow releasing your feet down, nice knees into chest, you might stretch out for Shavasana or you might roll to your side and join me in a seated meditation, just take your time, they're stretching out on your back or coming into a seat, you're coming into a seat and you might sit up on some support, any position with your legs, taking your time to settle in, feeling that gentle undulation, that length up through your spine, part of this fluid quality, let the shoulders soften down the back, notice the quality through the hands, you might lean ever so slightly towards the back of the body, always noticing what you do to get comfortable and settled and centered, making a few more moments here to just savor the sweetness of the practice, perhaps there's a little bit more space in the body, mind, heart, beautiful work, bring your hands together, we'll close with the sound of Aum breathing in, Aum, thank you for your practice, your presence, have a beautiful day, namaste.


Jenny S
4 people like this.
This was a perfect first-thing-in-the-morning practice...rolled out of bed right onto the mat and in 35 minutes all the rust and creakiness is gone. As always, such a perfect start to a fresh new week ✨✨✨
Alana Mitnick
Thank you for being here, Jenny! So happy that this hip practice was the medicine for you this morning. It's my go-to routine for easing in and opening the body. Wishing you a beautiful day and week! Love, Alana 
2 people like this.
This practice was perfect for this morning. Love.
Alana Mitnick
Awe, so happy to hear, Lori. I'm smiling now. Sending love xoA
Christel B
2 people like this.
Yes perfect for the early morning with your gentle guidance.
Alana Mitnick
Beautiful, Christel. So delighted to practice together, gently. Love, Alana 
Tina Anderson
I ABSOULUTELY LOVED this practise Alana. Thank you. Its full of kindness, gentleness, energy. All the way through I was saying to myself, oh I cant wait to come back tomorrow morning. I think its my go to morning practice now. It really is.  Many thanksssss Tina
Alana Mitnick
Hi Tina Anderson! So delighted to hear from you! Thank you for your kind words and vibrant energy. Enjoy your practice! Love, Alana 
Chris C
1 person likes this.
Great routine, thank you! :)
Alana Mitnick
Hi Chris! So happy your enjoyed this routine! I hope your hips and heart feel good. Sending love xo
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