Thursday, June 25, 2015

June 16 & 23 Restore Series

The Restore season is winding down. I can't believe that we have been going strong for 10 months now including the Retreat in December.  What no Restorative yoga for two months!!??  Wait, don't fear, we will have our summer retreat at Moyo.  Pencil in the date of Sunday, July 26th from 1:30-3:30 p.m.  The theme "cooling and simple"  The poses from the 16th included lots of these simple transitions and cooling poses.




The Poses
Childs Pose Variation
Props: bolster, one blocks, 2-3 blankets, neck roll for forehead
Benefits: Gently stretches the lower back, relieves shoulder tension and quiets the mind.  Give a sense of security. Feeling support and release. Gently lengthens the legs.
Extras:sandbag for sacrum

Place bolster on the mat lengthwise and lay a blanket over it. Make a smaller roll for the ankles and place at the other end of the mat. Also place a block at top end with a neck roll or eye pillow on top. Begin on all fours and lower  your upper body onto the bolster. Settle the tops of the ankles on the smaller roll and adjust the body so that the tops of the thighs rest on the edge of the bolster.  Lay the forehead on the cushioned block and place the arms to the side, shoulders dropping from the ears.  Soften your jaw and let the body sink into the supports and the floor. 

Reclined Bound Angle
Benefits: opens the hips and groin facilitating blood and energy flow to the urinary tract and reproductive organs. Opens the chest and abdomen benefiting breathing problems. 
Props: bolster, 4 blocks (or firm cushions, pillows or rolled-up blankets), 4 blankets and one extra blanket for warmth, strap and eye pillow



Place a block lengthwise under one end of a bolster to prop it up on an incline, add another block under bolster for stability. We used the wall in this week's class placing the bolster at a higher elevation. Place a double-fold blanket on floor next to low end of bolster and a long rolled blanket on top next to bolster (for sacral support). Sit with your back to the short, low end of the bolster. Place two blocks where your knees will rest (can top with a soft blanket or use other props as necessary for propping knees)  Bring your legs into Bound Angle Pose with the soles of your feet together. Wrap a blanket around your feet to create a feeling of containment.  Lie back on the bolster. Place supports under your arms so that they are not dangling and there is no feeling of stretch in the chest. Stay in the pose for 10 to 15 minutes

Legs up Variation
Props: 2 bolsters, 1-2 blankets, neck roll or one bolster and two blocks for more inclined variation
Benefits: drains fluid from the legs, releases pelvic floor, chest and shoulder opener, back of legs get a gentle stretch






Place one bolster horizontally on mat (for the knees) and one vertically (for the feet, ankes and lower legs). Arrange a triple-folded blanket horizontally (lumbar and thoracic spine area). Recline legs over the bolsters and lower the upper body on the blanket. Adjust so that the tips of the shoulder blades are right above the blanket. Add neck pillow under neck and move arms to Goddess position if comfortable for  your shoulders. Otherwise, they can go by your side or stack hands on top of your belly.  10 to 15 minutes, dropping the weight of your body on the exhalations.


Mountain Brook

Props: 2-3 blankets, neck roll, one bolsters
Benefits: counteracts the slumped position of our posture from sitting, computer use, driving, everyday activities. Opens the chest to help breathe easier. Improves digestion, reduces fatigue and can lift your mood.

Just like a babbling brook with boulders (soft ones!), imagine your body like the soft rushing waters laying over those boulders, smooth, flowing.  It will allow the natural curves of the body to be held up gently and the breath to flow.

On your mat, place one bolster where your knees will be and another where your lower legs can rest, one blanket rolled up where the bra line is (base of scapula), and a neck roll for the cervical spine.  Shoulders rest on the floor, arms to side with palms facing up or come into Goddess arms.  If ankles need support, use rolled-up blanket or dish towel.  Eye pillows can lightly rest on eyes or even be used on forehead (useful for headaches) or even on shoulders (wherever you need to release tension). To begin with stay in pose for 10 minutes working up to 20 minutes.  Great to use in savasana. Feel the heart open, the strain from holding yourself up all day evaporate.
Variations: Feeling cranky in the lumbar spine? Place blanket to fill the curves.  Want to feel more grounded while still opening the heart? Place rolled up blanket against wall and soles of feet touching blanket.  Need to feel cuddled? Swaddle your head in a blanket cradle.

Nesting Pose


Props: blankets, bolster
Benefits; Nurturing, sense of security, well-supported pose to regulate the nervous system, good for when you are feeling anxious, keeps body in alignment, supportive for the spine, hips, shoulders, head.  Allows for optimal healing and sleeping position. nurturing, sense of security, optimal for sleeping

Create a big enough folded blanket to place between the knees to align the legs in Tadasana. Add a folded blanket to rest your top arm on. Recline on a side that is comfortable, resting your head on a blanket. A neck roll can go under the ankles for support.  Bolster can rest along spine for further support and grounding. Finally, cover yourself with a blanket from head to toes.  Sink down with each long exhalation.  Mantra to accompany pose "I am safe, I am supported".

Thursday, June 11, 2015

June 9 Restore Series



The art of swaddling


When was the last time that your mom or dad tucked you into bed?  Maybe you are the one doing the tucking these days.  With the busyness of life (work, errands, phone calls, commutes), we then feel uncontained, our energy spilling out and subsequently not having enough energy to keep up.  Our final pose in class this week cleverly used the technique of swaddling to comfortably contain our physical body which may have, in turn, sent a signal to our nervous system to slow down, reset.  The message sent was "We are safe, supported, now let go of constriction."  To read more about the Restorative Practice and the very realness of the process of letting go.  Click on the link below.


When Restorative Yoga Doesn’t Feel RelaxingBY KAREN MACKLIN, SEQUENCE BY JILLIAN PRANSKY 

The Breath
Peace Breath
Steady flow of breath in and out at an even rate on the inhalation and exhalation while silently saying these affirmations (can create your own affirmations depending upon what you need).

Breath in Peace, Breathe out quiet
Breathe in Quiet, Breathe out stillness
Breathe in Stillness, Breathe out Balance
Breathe in Balance, Breathe out Light
Breathe in Light, Breathe out Love
Breathe in Love, Breathe out Peace

The Poses
Straddle Forward Fold
Props: bolster, 2-4 blankets, may use a chair, if difficult to reach bolster.
Benefits: calming, gently stretches lower back, nice transition from the days activities.  A good pose to do if you need a few minutes break from your daily work, easy to do and easily accessible.  Good for headaches.  Breathing is easier since muscles of the respiratory system are relaxed.

Place blanket single-fold on bolster draping down. Legs can stretch through chair or straddle or cross-legged.  Arms placed folded on chair in front of you. Rest forehead on arms. Tilt chin slightly toward your chest.  Close eyes. For comfort or lower back issues, sit on blanket, add rolled up blankets under knees if legs in straddle, or blocks/blankets under knees if cross legged. May add a blanket at sacrum for grounding.


Belly Down Twist (on bolster)

Props: bolster, two blocks, at least 3 blankets
Benefits: chest and hip opener, massages the organs in twist, opens the side body. Comforting.

Place the blocks on mat, one lower height, one higher then lay the bolster on blocks at an incline. Fold two blankets for arm supports on either side of the bolster and add a blanket to sit on.  Place right hip at lower end of bolster and on an inhale, lengthen the spine while lowering the body towards the bolster, gently turn your belly towards the bolster. Bend knees and stack legs. Arms rest on the supports by your side.  Begin with conscious breathing to settle into the pose and as sensations rise and fall, adjust your breath. Relax the weight of your body into the supports.

Reclined Bound Angle (Swaddled)


Props: bolster, two blocks, at least 3 blankets, neck roll
Benefits: releases tension in pelvic area, hips, neck, low back. Good for PMS and menopause as the circulation moves
to the reproductive organs, stimulates internal organs.  Feeling of containment, security.  Good for anxiety to ground yourself.


Place a block lengthwise under one end of a bolster to prop it up on an incline, add another block under bolster for stability.  Place a double-fold blanket on floor next to low end of bolster and a long rolled blanket on top next to bolster (for sacral support). Sit with your back to the short, low end of the bolster and bring soles of your feet together. Roll up a blanket (longest length). This roll is placed over the feet and then tucked under the legs to support the knees and hips.  Add additional blankets or neck pillow for your head to rest on. Place another blanket over you like a poncho and tuck the ends under your arms so that you are swaddled in the blanket. Stay in the pose for 10 to 15 minutes.

Friday, June 5, 2015

June 2 Restore Series

My Issue with Doing

I am going to write a memoir someday with the above title. I am a 'Doer', less of a 'be'er' (I know a 'be'er is not a word).   I come from a long line of people who are always busy and always have a project to work on.  I used to think that made me a productive part of society.  I am also an aficionado of the To Do list and get all giddy when I mark something as completed.  I have even found in my files, ancient To Do lists, stored away like priceless gems.  Oddly none of those say Enjoy Life and Be Present.

The present revelation of my nature should not be a shock to me as others in my life see it.  But I have been so good at keeping busy that I didn't have the time to realize that it was impacting my relationships with others and myself.  I needed to practice stillness and fast (more doing).  One such practice to stillness is meditation.  I have been dawdling in meditation for many years now, trying various styles but none stuck with me. I had to find a practice that connected with my self as a doer.

I have now found a way to meditate that can incorporate some 'doing' and bring about some stillness.  I have been using mala beads to meditate.  These are the prayer beads that you see monks using during meditation or now adorning yoginis wrists everywhere.  I sit comfortably, begin with an "Om" to set my intention and as I focus on my breath, I move the mala beads through the fingers of both hands one by one.  I like the tactile feeling of the beads moving through my fingers.  I feel gratitude that these natural seeds were sowed from somewhere in the world by someone in the world and now I can harness that energy to become still.

My meditation place

Paying attention to our breath known as Conscious Breathing, can also be a tool to use to be present rather than do. This is a way to begin our practice together to realize where we are starting off from.  The article "Conscious Breathing" below presents an awakening on the breath and its role to lessen our doing and increase our 'being'.

My meditation practice may change again.  Perhaps I will take less of an active meditative practice. (see Sa Ta Na Ma Meditation in sidebar for another example of active meditation) in the future.  This serves me now.  Explore your own meditation practices and the stillness it may bring.

The Breath

From the dawn of our birth until the sunset of death, we breathe, always and everywhere. Indeed, breath defines our life and supports us body and spirit. Besides being central to life, ever-present, and connected to the spirit, breathing involves an easily noticeable complex of physical sensations. Thus, the practice of breath awareness was widely embraced by our ancestors in the spiritual pursuit. The Buddha was engaged in breath awareness as his primary practice at the time of his enlightenment. The Christian Desert Fathers, Hindu Yogis, and Islamic Sufis employed variations of breath awareness.
Breath awareness forms a subclass of the more general awareness of bodily sensations. Because the breath always moves, the sensations of the bodily movements associated with breathing remain with us continually from birth to death. The more subtle sensations of the air moving through our nasal and oral passageways also stay with us. To powerfully anchor ourselves to the present, we need only abide in the sensations of each breath, one after another without a break. Since we always breathe, we have the potential to practice breath awareness at any and every waking moment.
A word of caution, though, at the outset: in practicing breath awareness we make no change whatsoever to the physical movement of the breath. We do not attempt to slow it down, speed it up, or alter it any way. We only bring our attention and awareness to the sensations of breathing, as they are, without imposing any changes on the breath. We do not interfere with the vital function of breathing. We simply ease into awareness of it and ride along to stay present.
Such relaxed and continuous awareness of the sensations of breathing creates a sturdy and effective basis for the path of spiritual transformation. This simple method entails a direct attention to, and consciousness of, the actual physical sensations associated with breathing. We might focus on the sensations in the nostrils, the air movement across the upper lip, or the rise and fall of the abdomen and rib cage. Or we might prefer to work with awareness of all of them at once in a more global view of breathing. Each has its advantages. The abdominal region offers relatively large movements, with obvious physical sensations that we can readily engage and follow. The nostrils and upper lip present a small, subtle, and very focused region. The narrow focus can be more difficult to acquire and maintain but enables us to quickly build up a sharp and strong attention. Global bodily awareness of breath readily supports a conscious backdrop to common daily activities. Our situation and state can guide us to the most appropriate style of practice in any given moment.
In meditation on the breath, we allow the breath to breathe itself. We do not interpose ourselves as doing the breathing, as being the one who is breathing. Consciously letting the breath breathe itself can lead to the shocking realization that our usual concept of our self is wrong, that the self we believe ourselves to be is just a collection of patterns and memories with nothing at its core. Putting this in another way: we go about our day doing many things, believing we are the doer. When we come to sitting meditation, nothing much seems to be happening other than breathing. So always believing ourselves to be the doer, we think we are the one who is breathing. But if we let the breath breathe itself, we see that there is no doer. And that insight can puncture our illusion of ego, liberating us from the notion that we are a permanent, separate self.
From ancient times until today, conscious breathing remains among the most powerful, effective, and natural methods for centering ourselves in presence and preparing our being for opening to the spirit.

The Poses
Childs Pose
Props: bolster, two blocks, 2-3 blankets (we used 3 folded blankets this week)
Benefits: Gently stretches the lower back, relieves shoulder tension and quiets the mind.  Give a sense of security. Feeling support and release.
Extras:sandbag for sacrum

Place the two blocks at either the lowest or medium height, equidistant from each other bolster lengthwise on top of blocks. A s-fold or triple fold blanket on top of bolster.  It may be more comfortable without blocks.  Legs straddle the props at one end, and lengthen body over them. Head will rest on props.  Additional blanket(s) may be used behind knees. Ideally props should extend all the way to the pelvis area but this may not be the case with your body structure.   Stay here for 10 minutes to begin with, rotating head side to side. 

Sublime Side Lean
Props: 1 blankets
Benefits: Stretches the torso and provides a gentle twist which allows a release in tension in the lower back area. Emphasis on three-part breath.  Elongates side body.

Create a bolster fold from one blanket.  Fold a blanket into smaller rectangle from a a full half fold.  Lay flat on floor and fold in thirds, the final third folding under (s-fold) then fold 1/3 in and other third in with fringe on top third.  Lie on right side with hip at the base of the blanket. Torso should rest on the blanket.  Right arm rest on the floor with the palm up.  The left arm can reach over the head to increase the stretch.  Close your eyes and allow your body to relax and release any stress or tension. Slowly sit up and switch sides for the same amount of time.
Focus on your breath.  Breath into your right side allowing that gentle stretch to travel from the tip of your fingers down your lower spine.  Sense the left side of your body gently melting and surrendering to the ground beneath you.  All tension and stress being recycled by mother earth.  Sense the gentle letting go of your muscles and knowing that you are safe and supported.  Breath deep and exhale soft and long.

Reclined Bound Angle
Benefits: opens the hips and groin facilitating blood and energy flow to the urinary tract and reproductive organs. Opens the chest and abdomen benefiting breathing problems. 
Props: bolster, 4 blocks (or firm cushions, pillows or rolled-up blankets), 4 blankets and one extra blanket for warmth, strap and eye pillow


Place a block lengthwise under one end of a bolster to prop it up on an incline, add another block under bolster for stability. We used the wall in this week's class placing the bolster at a higher elevation. Place a double-fold blanket on floor next to low end of bolster and a long rolled blanket on top next to bolster (for sacral support). Sit with your back to the short, low end of the bolster. Place two blocks where your knees will rest (can top with a soft blanket or use other props as necessary for propping knees)  Bring your legs into Bound Angle Pose with the soles of your feet together. Wrap a blanket around your feet to create a feeling of containment.  Lie back on the bolster. Place supports under your arms so that they are not dangling and there is no feeling of stretch in the chest. Stay in the pose for 10 to 15 minutes.

Friday, May 29, 2015

May 26 Restore Series


Deepen your Experience

We hope that you enjoyed the poses and beautiful visualizations that Carmen led you through this week.  Visualizations are a wonderful way to go deeper within as your breath regulates, the muscles relax, you begin to focus better and the nervous system calms down.  If you would like to try out more of these guided visualizations, go to   http://www.innerhealthstudio.com/relaxation-scripts.html             and record yourself or a willing partner as you guide the visualization.

The Poses
Supported Twist Seated

Props: 2 bolsters, blankets, block
Benefits: lengthens spine, gentle hip opener, Gentle twist for the spine (quadratus lumborom) Releases stress on the back muscles and a stretch to the intercostal muscles. As muscles relax, breathing is enhanced.


Lean one bolster against the wall with a block support underneath. Add a blanket to the bolster. The other bolster is placed lengthwise at the base of the vertical bolster.  Sit on bottom bolster and with an inhalation, lengthen spine then begin to twist your belly towards the upright bolster reclining over.  Rest head on arms or top of bolster. Add additional blankets to ground through the belly and rest legs on.

Legs up on Chair
Props: chair, 2-3 blankets, neck roll, eye pillow
Extras: Sandbag, Webkinz stuffed animals
Benefits: relaxes the muscles of the lower back, legs, refreshes the legs, relaxes the muscles and organs of the abdomen.  Blanket on belly or legs.

Place a blanket on chair so you don't feel the hard surface.  If you need to elevate the body, you can place a triple fold blanket in front of chair, then place your hips on blanket to one side, swing the legs up onto the seat of the chair as you lower your upper body onto the mat or floor.  Use a neck roll to support cervical spine. Place a blanket or sandbag on legs to ground you in the pose. Arms release to the sides with palms turned up.  Use an eye pillow to shut out any light for ultimate relaxation. An eye pillow or some type of weighted object (I've used stuffed animals) can be placed in open palms to move and free up energy.  Stay for up to 10 minutes.  Your beginning practice may consist of only 5 minutes.  Feel the legs drain, the stress melt away.


Belly Down with Hip Opener

Props: 2 blankets, neck roll or small pillow for head
Benefits: gently opens hips, lengthens leg muscles and tops of the feet, soothing for the belly, shoulder opener, grounding, lessens anxiety



Stack one or two blankets to the side folded in half. As you release to the floor, lengthen the body and then bend the leg at 90 degree angles to lay on the blankets to the side. Arms can come to goddess position, head turned to the side or stack hands as a pillow.  For those with tight shoulders, extend arms by the sides of the body.  When you need to turn the head, do so with a soft inhalation.

Friday, May 22, 2015

May 19 Restore Series

Fire
Ether

Earth
Water

Air

The elements of nature.  Upon further study and contemplation, I found not only are all aspects of our life created from the basic material elements of the birth of our home, the earth but aspects of our own nature and mind are made up of the qualities of these natural elements.  These are called the gunas (with a little "g") in Ayurvedic study.  Gunas are the characteristics of the 5 elements (ether, air, fire, water, and earth).  For example, air is dry, cool, windy, mobile and rough. Water is mobile, steady, soft, dense, liquid. 

Upon waking, it may be useful to check in with your physical body and notice how it feels. Does it feel dull, heavy today or is there a sharpness to it or maybe it feels completely light.  And then as you set your intention for the day, you could include an intention to balance those qualities in your body.  If you are feeling that dull, heaviness in your body possibly inertia, maybe you can add a brisk walk or energetic breath to move the sluggishness. Or what if your thoughts are racing and your body feels cold with air like qualities, add as your intention some grounding activities like restorative yoga or nuturing your body with oil massage (abhyanga in Ayurveda).

These gunas can assist in seeing where your imbalances are and provide a starting point for balancing practices.  

Journaling Exercise: take 5 minutes to sit comfortably, close your eyes and observe your physical body. Open the eyes and write in your journal the qualities or characteristics that you feel in your body along the lines of those qualities found in the 5 elements.  Are your daily activities increasing those qualities or supporting your balance?  Try this for the mind. What qualities are present in your thoughts?  What activities in your life are adding to these qualities (i.e. feeling stressed (spacey, air element), what is adding to this stress?  

After journaling, take a few more moments to breath evenly and deeply to let any observations go.  For more information on the gunas, please go to https://www.dharmainc.org/teachings/view-teaching/twenty-gunas-qualities.






The Breath

Alternate Nostril Breath for Meditation (Nadi Shodhana)

This breath invites the calm in, balancing both sides of our nasal passages and our brain.  We tend to breath predominately with either the left or right nasal passage and we become unbalanced.  A few minutes at the start of a class or practice, can merge the two hemispheres of the brain and allow you to become more receptive.

Breathing through the right or left nostrils gives different effects.
Right Nostril
increases heart rate, increases verbal performance, stimulates left brain, increases rate of blinking
Left Nostril decreases heart rate, increases spatial performance, stimulates right brain, reduces rate of blinking,

The Practice: Find a comfortable seat or laying down.  Using the right hand, bring the middle and index fingers to rest toward the palm.  Alternatively, they can be placed at your third eye (forehead area). Begin with even breaths through both nostrils, gently close off right nostril, then inhale through left nostril and exhale through the right nostril.  Gently close off left nostril, as you inhale through right and exhale through left. Keep the same count for both sides. That is one round.  Repeat for 5 to 6 rounds or more.  Tongue comes to rest on roof of mouth.

Other variations of this breath are:
  • Retaining the breath after the inhale while keeping both nostrils gently closed. 
  • Extending the exhale longer than inhale
  • Cessation of breath after the exhale, with only one nostril closed
Mental Nadi Shodhana.  Mentally instruct the breath to come in and out through alternating nostrils.  Can even visualize breathing in from one far away place and breathing out to another far away place (Mt. Everest (Inhale), African plains (Exhale)


The Poses
Reclined Bound Angle (grounding)
Benefits: opens the hips and groin facilitating blood and energy flow to the urinary tract and reproductive organs. Opens the chest and abdomen benefiting breathing problems. 
Props: 4 blankets and one extra blanket for warmth and eye pillow

This version is lower than a Reclined Bound Angle on a bolster which is perfect for a day that you need to open the chest but need a bit more grounding.  Place 2 to 3 (based on back comfort) blankets folded long on top of each other.  Unfold a blanket completely and from the longest end, make a roll. It may resemble a long snake. Sit at the end of the stacked blankets so that your low back is on the support and hips on the floor, smooth side and place the middle of your blanket roll over your feet. Tuck the end of the rolled up blanket under your legs and hips. Keep the hands on the blanket as you recline over the stacked blankets to pull the feet in closer to the pelvis. Ensure that you have enough support under the legs and hips so that you are not holding them up. Get comfortable with the stacked supports and add or take away any blankets.  Add your eye pillow and relax your arms by your side. Stay in the pose for 10 to 15 minutes.

Supported Bridge (adding energy, vitalization)
Props: 4 blankets, neck roll, eye pillow, can also use bolster for more stretch
Extras: blanket for warmth
Benefits: Expands the chest muscles, opens the lungs, balances the glands, quiets the nerves and releases tension in the nervous system, increases oxygen intake to the brain, can stimulate the immune system (thyroid)

Lie on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Lift butt and slide the stack of 2 or 4 blankets under the base of your spine. Find a comfortable position, then let the upper back release on the floor. Arms are relaxed at sides or resting on belly. Feel chest and belly rise with each breath. Roll gently to one side when done and inhale up to seated.


Revolved Abdominal Twist (grounding)
Props: bolster, 3 blankets, 1 extra blanket for warmth and or laying on lower back to ground
Benefits: Gentle twist for the spine (quadratus lumborom) Releases stress on the back muscles and a stretch to the intercostal muscles. As muscles relax, breathing is enhanced.

Set one bolster lengthwise on your mat.  Depending upon your comfort, height can be elevated with blocks under bolster. Lay one blanket on top double-fold and one double-fold at end of bolster where your right hip will go. Sit next to bolster with your right hip touching it, bend knees, left or top ankle can lay in arch of right foot or other comfortable position for feet. For added comfort, place blanket between legs. Lengthen body over bolster, laying bent legs in one directions and upper body facing down on bolster. Arms drape down sides of the bolster.
  

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

May 5 Restore Series

The Elements

ETHER

FIRE


AIR



EARTH



WATER

Why place importance on the 5 Elements?  Check back for next blog to find out.........


The Poses

Supported Childs Pose
Props: bolster, one blocks, 2-3 blankets, neck roll for forehead
Benefits: Gently stretches the lower back, relieves shoulder tension and quiets the mind.  Give a sense of security. Feeling support and release. Gently lengthens the legs.
Extras:sandbag for sacrum

Place bolster on the mat lengthwise and lay a blanket over it. Make a smaller roll for the ankles and place at the other end of the mat. Also place a block at top end with a neck roll or eye pillow on top. Begin on all fours and lower  your upper body onto the bolster. Settle the tops of the ankles on the smaller roll and adjust the body so that the tops of the thighs rest on the edge of the bolster.  Lay the forehead on the cushioned block and place the arms to the side, shoulders dropping from the ears.  Soften your jaw and let the body sink into the supports and the floor. 

Legs up Variation

Props: 3 blankets, 2 blocks, neck roll, eye pillow
Benefits: drains the legs, reducing fluids in the legs, gentle
stretch to the legs, releases pelvis and low back, rejuventating

Make two stacks of blankets on your mat and place the two blocks at the edge of these stacks. Lay a folded over blanket over the blocks. Additional blanket may be needed for your low back. Lie down on the mat or floor and place lower legs on the stack of blankets and ankles and feet on the block supports. Keep legs in tadasana alignment for better blood flow. Add your neck roll and eye pillow, arms relaxed by your side.

Starfish Savansana
Props: 2 or more blankets, neck rolls, eye pillow
Benefits: soothing to the nervous system, grounding, gentle chest opener,  releases the pelvis

Lay a blanket on  your mat for extra comfort and warmth, blankets for the arms as well.  As you lay down, place your feet towards the corners of your mat and arms about 10-12 inches from your body, palms up. Add your eye pillow, and blanket on top.  We adjusted the legs with our Double Dutch for op