I’ll be the first to admit that doing yoga isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when I think of relaxing.
A nice spa day, sleeping in, maybe even a little wine—but certainly not twisting and contorting my body in all types of shapes to the tune of nature sounds from YouTube.
However, this is totally a mistake.
Yoga is actually an ancient spiritual practice that has been used to increase mindfulness and spirituality for thousands of years.
And in more recent history, it has served as an exceptionally effective tool for exercise and relaxation.
Given that we live in a super stressful world, we should all be looking to deal with the regular stressors of life in a plethora of healthy ways—yoga included.
Not sure where to get started?
No worries! Here are 5 easy poses to help you unleash your inner zen.
The Easy Pose
Dubbed The Easy Pose, this pose is quite literally the easiest one for beginners to learn.
It’s a comfortable position in which you cross your legs while seated on the floor and take deep, slow breaths as you keep your posture straight and your hands relaxed.
This particular yoga pose is not only meant to help you relax, but it strengthens your back while also increasing the mobility of your ankles and legs.
Much like the physical aspect of this pose, the mental benefit is that it helps you remain rooted in reality and grounded.
Affirmation: I am safe, I am stable, and I am at peace within my life and in myself.
Upward-facing dog is the slightly tougher big sister of the popular yoga pose, downward-facing dog.
Simply put, upward-facing dog is when you lie facedown on the ground and then slowly lift your body off the ground by using your arms to stretch your torso upward.
This pose is meant to open your chest for deep breaths, strengthen your back, and stretch your arms.
Because the upward-facing dog helps broaden your chest, this position is said to promote energy flow from your heart space and increase self-love and compassion.
Affirmation: I am worthy of genuine love and compassion from myself and others.
Warrior II Pose
For those of you who don’t do well with poses that require you to get on the floor, then the Warrior II pose will be your best friend. It’s a standing yoga pose where you position your lower body into a lunge while extending both of your arms far out to the sides of your body.
This standing posture is super good for stretching the legs, strengthening your core, and even opening your hips. Equally importantly, it increases your energy by helping you to feel especially strong and confident in mind, body, and soul—like a true warrior.
Affirmation: I honor the power in others because I first honor the power within myself.
The infamous bow pose is one of the few yoga postures that beginners tend to avoid because it’s not the easiest.
If you’re unfamiliar with the pose, it requires you to lie on your belly and stretch your chest and arms back while simultaneously bending your legs forward so you can grab your ankles until your body is bent into—you guessed it—a bow posture.
This yoga pose is one of the best full body stretches you could give yourself. Plus, it stimulates blood flow to your internal organs and improves digestive functions.
Affirmation: Positive energy and peace flows through me easily and abundantly.
The child pose is a deeply calming yoga pose that is so simple, yet extremely powerful.
The flow of this posture begins with you sitting on the heels of your feet and then slowly extending your arms and torso over your knees until your abdomen and part of your chest are now resting on your knees, and your forehead is now gently placed on your mat.
This pose targets the lower abdomen energy center which rules over your self-expression and inner child. As you breathe in and out, you should develop a sense of inner peace.
Affirmation: I freely express myself and my creativity without judgment or restriction.