Lauren Ohayon challenge your core

Yoga Poses

Restore Your Core Promotion

Yoga Poses

By Lauren Ohayon 01/04/2021

4 Min Read

Yoga is an ancient practice that’s sought to unite a person’s body, soul, and mind for whole body health and wellness. Today, yoga has been refined and used as a routine that boasts many health benefits and restorative exercise planning for men and women around the world. Some studies have shown that yoga poses health benefits in potentially helping with anxiety, depression, stress, and helping reduce inflammation in the body. Thus, yoga can go far beyond aiding in balance and flexibility by taking part in exercise routines designed to restore function to your core, pelvic floor, legs, hips, and lumbar spine.

As someone who has experienced a severe back injury and benefitted from restorative yoga, I prioritize how I move in my programs. Instead of reducing exercise, I have developed techniques for continuing yoga and exercise that prioritizes movement safety dynamically. In this article, I will address yoga poses I use in my program that focus on:

  • Building strength, even during stretching
  • Maintaining good alignment and form
  • Wise and dynamic sequences that challenge you but do not break you

What are The 5 Basic Types of Yoga Stances?

In the practice of yoga, there are 5 basic stances or types of yoga. In order to find the right program for you and which yoga best suits your needs, it may be helpful to give an overview of the most commonly practiced types of yoga. Below is a list of the 5 basic types of yoga.

  • Standing Poses: Standing poses are often a warm-up practice to help prepare your body for movement. In slow flow yoga, standing poses are often practiced in longer sequences with stages of rest in between.
  • Balancing Poses: Balance poses are great for beginner’s. This form of yoga can help build the necessary core strength for more advanced movements, postures, and stretches. 
  • Seated Poses: Seated stretches are great for loosening hips and hamstrings after a workout or at the end of your yoga class. Using a pillow or folded blanket for your bottom can help make these stretches a bit more comfortable.
  • Supine Poses: Resting poses and positions are important to learn for break periods. These positions can continue to relieve and loosen your hips, hamstrings, and provide gentle twists and inversions.

Are you looking for safe and restorative exercise to heal your pelvic floor?

Learn more about the RYC program

Are you looking for safe and restorative exercise to heal your pelvic floor?

Learn more about the RYC program

What are 9 Yoga Poses?

My program is designed to teach men and women how to help their bodies become more responsive in their daily activities. This means training the body to engage and respond appropriately when engaging in lifting, walking, standing, and other daily light activities. Posture, breathing mechanics, and how you move your body are crucial to full body health and wellness.

Below I will address a few asanas positions and stretches that I encourage in my yoga practice.

Tadasana (Mountain Pose)

The mountain pose is a standing position. This position aids in helping engage the major muscles groups while improving focus and concentration. This pose is the starting position for all poses within the asanas yoga practice. To begin this stretch:

Stand with your heals apart with your arms resting at your sides. Gently lift your toes and the balls of your feet while spreading your toes – laying them gently back onto the floor. Distribute your body weight evenly between your feet. Begin lifting with your ankles and firmly flexing your thigh muscles while rotating them inward. Inhale through your ribcage, as you exhale, relax your shoulder blades. Elongate your neck and gently broaden your collarbones. During this position – your body you are aligned: ears, shoulders, hips, and feet should be aligned. When you first begin practicing, you may want to ensure proper alignment by standing with your back against a wall. Remember to breathe appropriately and not forcefully during these poses.

Vrikshasana (Tree Pose)

The tree pose is another asanas movement that helps improve balance and strength in your legs and lower back. To practice this pose:

Place the right foot of your left thigh – your sole should rest flat on your thigh and be placed firmly. Try to keep your left leg straight and balanced. Inhale while lifting your arms above your head toward the ceiling, bringing your palms together. Keep your spine straight and take a few deep breaths. As you slowly begin to exhale, gently bring your hands down to a relaxed position and lease your right leg. Repeat these steps with the opposite leg.

Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)

Downward facing dog stretches the hamstrings and chest while lengthening the spine. This position can also increase blood circulation helping you feel more energized. To perform this pose:

To begin, start on all fours – knees and hands firmly placed on the ground aligned with your shoulders and hips. It may be easier as you begin learning this position, to start with a  downward facing”puppy” pose. Remain on your knees, and slowly shift each elbow down to where your hands previously rested. Gradually shift your knees a few paces back, and gently lower your heart to the floor while lifting your butt – head and spine aligned.  Gently move your shoulders away from your ears and stretch, breathing deeply, yet gently.

To perform the downward facing dog, begin in the same position as before. Begin by lifting each elbow of the ground slowly and then raise your knees: elbow, elbow; knee, knee. With arms outstretched, lift your buttocks up, with your head and spine aligned, lowered toward the floor. It may help to pedal your feet as you remain in this position instead of staying static. Breathe deeply. Repeat.

Trikonasana (Triangle Pose)

The triangle pose is a great pose to help with hip mobility, stretching your legs and torso, as well as encouraging deep breathing. To begin this pose:

Stand with your feet wide apart. Shift your right foot to a 90 degree position while keeping the leg closer to your torso. Firmly place your feet into the ground, keeping your weight evenly distributed between both feet. Inhale deeply. As you exhale, slowly lower your arm to the floor while lifting your left arm up. Keep your waist straight and ensure you are bending sideways and not backward or forward. Continue breathing deeply and stretch as much as you can. Repeat with your left side.

Kursiasana (Chair Pose)

This pose is one that can be a bit challenging to do. However, it is a powerful pose that helps strengthen your legs and arms. In order to perform this pose:

Stand with your feet slightly apart, about a thumbs print between your feet. Stretch your arms straight out without bending your elbows. Now, this is the part that can be more challenging. Inhale deeply and as you exhale, begin bending your knees, pushing your pelvis downward like you are sitting on a chair. During this shift in your position, it is important to keep your back and neck straight. Posture and balance are important for this. It may be helpful to begin bending your knees in a way that your body tends to do – this can bulge your belly and keep your back a bit angled. During this stage, place one palm gently on your low back above your tailbone, and the other on your belly. Gently push your tailbone downward while lifting your torso into a straight, up and down, position. Take deep breaths and bend gradually.

Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)

This stretch is great for your lower back muscles and opening your chest for deep breaths. The cobra pose can aid in cushioning the spine, triceps, and aids in spine flexibility. To begin this pose:

Lay with your belly flat on the floor, legs and arms outstretched close together. Slowly place your hands below your shoulders and keep your feet and toes flat on the floor. Push your weight in through your foundation, shifting your shoulder blades closer together, and gently lift your chest and head up while deeply inhaling. Remember to make sure you are not pinching in your shoulders or neck. Gently engage in this motion, keeping your head tilted back and your shoulders away from your ears. As you return to the ground, exhale.

Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend)

The seated forward bend improves flexibility of the hips, hamstrings, and the back while lengthening the spine. To perform this pose:

Sit up straight with your legs outstretched, close together, with your toes pointing outward. Inhale deeply, raising your hands up over your head toward the ceiling. Stretch your spine by lifting upward, keeping your foundation firmly in place. While you exhale, gently outstretch your body, bending forward from the hips toward your feet – chin moving toward your toes. Place your hands wherever they reach, and place your face down between your shins or in between your knees. Inhale deeply 3 or 4 times as you elongate your spine – keeping your navel close to your knees. Stretch your arms back out, and lift from your hips, keeping your arms outstretched. Once you are back in a seated position, slowly lower your arms back down.

Child’s Pose

The child’s pose is a restful posture that restores physical and mental vitality. This can be a great pose to insert in between more challenging positions. To begin this pose:

Bend your knees and place your feet together like a triangle. Make sure you gently lower your body to a restful sitting position on your heels. While keeping your hips and butt firmly on your heels, lower your head down toward your mat. Place your hands forward close to your side. Press your heart against your thighs and breathe gently.

Sukhasana (Easy Pose)

Despite Sukhasna translating to easy, this pose is not always easy for beginners. Think of it more as a pose of ease rather than an easy practice. Sukhasana is a centering pose that is most commonly used for meditation, you may be familiar with the stance without ever actually performing the pose yourself. It is a comfortable pose that is great for beginning your yoga practice. To perform this pose:

Sit in a comfortable position, with your legs crossed (criss-cross, applesauce style). If sitting on your mat is a bit uncomfortable for you, you can use a yoga block or a folded blanket to sit on. Keep your spine straight and place your hands on your knees. Relax your body and breathe deeply.

Looking for more tip to live without

fear, pain or discomfort

Check out the RYC learning center.

Looking for more tip to live without

fear, pain or discomfort

Check out the RYC learning center.

Which Yoga is Best for Beginners?

Restorative Yoga

At Restore Your Core, we practice what is known as restorative yoga. This practice incorporates blocks, straps, yoga mats, and blankets to help encourage proper body alignment as well as releasing any tension in your body. Most of these stretches and poses are designed to help release the tension in your body passively – so not always during a stretch.

These positions mentioned above are a great place to begin. If you are looking for a program designed to release stress in your body, restore your body’s natural function, and encourage better posture and body alignment, then consider looking into our 13-week program. We’d love to have you! Connect with over 10,000 other women who are asking real-life body questions, managing their core and pelvic floor injuries, and celebrating intentional progress and healing!