We have teamed up with the amazing Rhian’s Yoga, based in Edinburgh who is a fellow yogi and beloved friend to put together the perfect Restorative Summer Yoga routine. We know what its like, you couldn’t resist that last drink; you’ve been treating yourself a bit too much (you totally deserve it); it’s just one long summer of fun; whatever your reason – and we aren’t judging – you’ve been partying too hard and your body is starting to scream out in protest.
We’ve put together a little flow of our favourite restorative postures to help you recover – or persevere a little longer – from those tough partying days. We recommend holdign each pose for at least 60 seconds but we completely understand if you want to hang out in some of them for longer!
1: Starting in Child’s Pose (balasana), keeping your knees quite wide for this one and push your bottom back towards your feet while you rest your heavy head on a hopefully cool mat, arms stretched out in front of you. Inhale and exhale deeply, focussing the breath into the back of your torso. This pose will ease you into movement, relieving back and neck pain and, helps calm the brain and steady any spinning you might be experiencing – so stay here for as long as you need to.
2: When you are ready push up onto all fours finding Table pose and check that your wrists are in line with your shoulders and knees are in line with your hips.
3: Continue with deep inhaling and exhaling a couple rounds of Cat / Cow (marjaryasana / bitilasana), inhaling as you look forward to cow and exhaling while you arch your back.
4: You will start to feel your spine release and energy flowing through the body, when you feel ready go ahead and push up into Downward Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana) Gently lift your knees off the floor and begin to straighten your arms and legs while relaxing your head so that there is no tension in your neck. This is a great pose to get a bit of energy back into you and to prime your body for digesting whatever you are going to throw at it later.
5: When you are done either in table or downward facing dog, walk your feet to your hands and enjoy a minute or so of Standing forward fold (uttanasana), allowing some fresh blood to cleanse your brain. You can hold onto your elbows and rock side to side here gently for an extra release.
6: From here, squat back down to the mat, feet about hip/ shoulder width apart, hands in prayer pose to Frog (malasana). This pose will start to stretch your ankles and groin and tone your belly allowing a gentle massage of your beaten up internal organs encouraging them to expel toxins.
7: If you feel like pushing yourself by this stage you can then go into a gentle twist to further squeeze out any nasty toxins by moving into Revolved Garland (parivrtta malasana). Place your right hand on your left knee and gently rotate your left arm up, your hand heading towards the ceiling. Hold for as long as you feel comfortable and then slowly unwind and repeat on the other side.
8: After all that exertion and movement it’s time to slow things down again and sit down into Seated forward fold (pashimotanasana) with your head resting on a yoga brick or pillow or soft bag if it feels heavy or you feel light headed. Ensure you reach forward with your hands, and the longer you sit in this pose the further forward you will begin to fold and feel your hamstrings lengthening.
9: Slowly lift your torso up to seated, then start to lie back and bring the soles of your feet together into reclined bound angle (supta baddha konasana), if you are feeling really delicate we find it’s quite nice to lie along a bolster or some pillows so your back is supported and your torso raised slightly.
10: You can stay there for as long as your like, or if after a few minutes that seems a bit too active for you in your hips or knees, you can release your legs out in front of you and relax in corpse (savasana) pose, and we recommend supporting your head and arms on pillows and maybe using an eye mask so that you can totally unwind and be at one with your breathe and mind.
Now you should prepped and primed and ready to go again – but we won’t tell if you decide to stay where you are for a little longer.