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6 Yoga Poses for Finding Balance

6 Yoga Poses for Finding Balance

Sometimes all it takes is a few minutes of mindful yoga practice to feel like all the seemingly chaotic pieces fall back into place.

When you are stressed, you can fall out of alignment with the balanced part of yourself that always lives in the present moment. Your stress takes you into past moments, or moments to come, and away from the only thing you can really have: this moment.

So, what should you do when you find yourself feeling like an old rusty teeter totter that can’t find that sweet center?

Take time to slow down, find your breath, and move your body to bring you back to a place of mindfulness where you can notice what is happening in the present moment.

Practicing yoga is not about forcing yourself back into that place of balance. This practice is about allowing space to develop more awareness which in turn develops perspective so you can choose different habits and ways of being that serve you better.

It is about coming to a place where we can experience what is happening in the body and mind so that we can make a conscious decision about the action steps we want to take to stay more in the present moment where the feeling of balance lives.

The beauty of balancing postures is that they require all your physical and mental focus.

They strengthen the body by calling on your muscles to hold you in a position you aren’t used to being in.

They strengthen the mind by calling on all your concentration which silences the mental chatter that can keep you exhausted.

Practicing your balance improves stability, helps prevent injury, improves concentration, and provides feelings of empowerment.

As you go through the six yoga poses below, remember that this is a practice for the body and mind.

Allow yourself to find full breaths while in each postures and also in the transitions in between. Commit yourself to paying attention to how you feel and what comes up as you practice. If you fall out, don’t beat yourself up. Just keep showing up and try again. It is all about the journey and it is allowed to be messy!


Downward Dog

Girl doing Downward Dog Yoga Pose

Come onto your hands and knees.

Bring your hands in front of your shoulders a few inches.

Spread your fingers wide and press your palms and knuckles into the ground.

Tuck your toes and lift your sitting bones towards the sky.

Keep your knees slightly bent as you allow your body to come into the posture.

When you are ready, and if it is accessible, you can work your heels towards the ground.

Find 5-10 breaths here.  

Three-Legged Downward Dog

Girl doing Three-Legged Downward Dog Yoga Pose

From your Downward-facing dog, lift your right leg towards the sky.

Activate your foot so all five toes are pointed down towards the ground allowing your right hip to stay squared with the left.

Your left leg stays strong and your shoulders squared towards the earth.

Find 5 breaths here.

Come back into Downward Dog and switch sides.  

Standing Knee Lift

Girl doing Standing Knee Lift Yoga Pose

Begin standing with feet hip distance apart.

Press gently down into your feet while keeping a micro bend in your knees.

Imagine a line of energy moving up from your feet through the crown of your head, allowing the crown of your head to lift towards the sky.

Draw your shoulder blades down your back.

Bring your hands to heart center as you press your palms into one another.

Shift the weight into your left foot and lift your right knee up to hip level, focusing on keeping that hip from lifting higher than the left hip.

Flex your right foot like you are still standing on the ground with it.

Pick one place for your eyes to rest.

Find 5-10 breaths here.

Lower that foot back down and switch sides when you are ready.

Airplane Pose (Warrior III)

Girl doing Airplane (Warrior III) Yoga Pose

Begin standing with feet hip distance apart and your palms together at heart center.

Lift your right foot and bring that knee to hip level.

Extend your right leg behind you as you work your torso towards parallel with the floor.

Keep your lifted leg very active by flexing your foot and pointing the toes downward.

Your hands can stay at heart center or the arms can come alongside you with your palms facing down.

Find one spot on the ground slightly in front of you to rest your gaze.

Find 5 breaths.

Come back to standing and switch sides when you are ready.  

Standing Figure Four

Girl doing Standing Figure Four Yoga Pose

Begin standing with feet hip distance apart and your palms together at heart center.

Bend both knees and press your hips back like you are sitting in a chair.

Lift your right foot and cross your right ankle over your left knee.

Keep your right foot active by flexing your toes.

Elongate through the crown of your head as you bend more into your left knee.

Find 5 breaths.

Come back to standing and switch sides when you are ready.  

Boat

Girl doing Boat Yoga Pose

Come to a seated position with your legs extended in front of you.

Bring your hands to the ground just behind your hips.

Engage your feet by flexing them towards your face.

Lean back slightly as you bend your knees and lift your feet up off the ground.

Bring your shins parallel to the floor.

Hands can stay on the ground or reach forward with palms facing one another.

Find 5 breaths here.

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