Good morning, my friend. Day 1 of our hearth healthy breathwork kicks off with one of my favorite breathing + yoga pose combos, in one of my favorite places:
Cat Pose + Lion’s Breath + Your Bed
As we are waking up, before we pop out of bed for the day, we’re going to some gentle breathwork. These gentle movements combined with the breathing help to warm up the spine and clear your throat chakra, preparing you for standing easily and communicating well through the day. Perfect after a night of prone sleeping and not speaking. And, this breath helps expand the lungs while energizing your body to help you start your day.
Some tips, sunshine:
- Be gentle with yourself … you’re just waking up and this is about warming yourself.
- Keep the movements small at first and increase your range as you go.
- Maybe don’t aim for your full range or most expressive breath. You can try the pose and the breath again later in the day when you are completely warm. Then, you can do the outbreath more robustly and notice how that feels, too.
Let’s wake up and breathe!
- First, while you’re still lying in bed, gently wiggle your fingers and toes … good morning appendages! It might feel good to rock your hips side to side (helloooooo body). As you’re waking up, reach one arm overhead for a gentle stretch while making small circles with your wrists. At your own waking pace, bring your other arm up, too, and rotate that wrist as well
- When you’re ready roll on your side to the middle of the bed, onto all fours. Your wrists will probably have some stories to tell you so lean back and give them some space as needed.
- Take a few gentle breaths with your back flat in this table top pose.
- Ready for a small lion’s breath … a baby Simba version?
- As you breathe in through your nose, drop your belly toward the bed. Just a little movement; we’re warming up. (this is technically cow pose … so you’re actually getting in TWO yogas this morning., you over-achiever, you!)
- As you breathe out, open your mouth and push your tongue out while bringing in the belly and rounding the back. Very easy going movements; waking as we go.
- Back to table top and a neutral spine for a breath or two, maybe a wrist wraggle.
- When you’re ready, inhale, drop your belly, slightly arch your back and allow your chin to raise a bit.
- The breath flows in and now must flow out so when you’re ready, push thru your hands, bring the belly in to force the air out through your mouth, wide with tongue out a little further. Maybe a whooshing sound comes out as we round our back and bring our tailbone to the bed.
- Now you’re getting it!
- Return to table top and your neutral spin as needed and allow your breath to flow in and out on its own. Or, pull your bum back to your heels to give your wrists a break.
- When you’re ready, do two arch + inhale then rounding + whooshing exhales through the mouth.
- Repeat for several breaths, returning to neutral spine/table top and your natural breath as needed.
- RAWR … you’re ready for your day!
A few more tips for ya:
- In the arch position, allow your shoulders to broaden and move away from your ears to protect your neck. As the belly heads toward the bed, your heart is peaking through your straight arms.
- In the rounded position, relax your neck and again, shoulders should stay away from the ears. You’ll feel a better spine stretch.
- There are modifications and adaptations galore of these poses, utilizing blocks and chairs as needed. Please feel free to reach out.
Common Sense Disclaimer: Use your best judgment when attempting breathwork or movement. If it doesn’t feel right or you can’t, then don’t. Breathwork and movement are infinitely scalable. Find what works for you and feel free to speak with your healthcare team about what you’re feeling. Choose well.