5 minutes of yoga a day
Fast sequence when there is no time at all
It’s great when you have two hours a day to practice yoga. But in the modern, fast-paced world, you will be very lucky if you manage to stand in a dog face down for at least five minutes. In yoga, what you do every day matters more than what you do from time to time. Therefore, setting aside 30 minutes every day to practice will make you feel great.
I am offering you a sequence that you can practice at home when you have very little time. After practicing a couple of times, memorize it and you can do it anywhere. This practice targets the full range of motion of the spine, shoulders, and hips, while focusing on breathing will balance the balance in just 5 minutes.
Alternating breathing or Nadi Shodhana pranayama
- Sit in a comfortable cross-legged position with your back straight. And start the practice with Nadi Shodhana pranayama (alternate breathing through the nose).
- This pranayama quickly calms the nervous system and reduces stress. Traditionally, it is practiced with Vishnu mudra (bend the index and middle fingers to the palm and hold them passively), raise your hand and place your thumb to the right of the bridge of the nose, and the ring finger to the left. Alternate the nostrils with your fingers.
- Begin by exhaling through both nostrils, then inhale through the right nostril and exhale through the left.
- Then inhale through the left nostril and exhale through the right.
- Practice this pranayama slowly for one minute.
Cow and cat in one stream
- Press your palms firmly against the rug in a cat pose, and do a cow-cat five times. (on exhalation, the back is rounded, on inhalation, it bends)
- After five repetitions of the cow-cat, focus in the pelvic area and perform circular motion with the pelvis to the right and left. These movements will help relieve stress on your lower back and the tension from walking throughout the day.
- On inhalation, the stomach drops down and the shoulders drop down, on the exhale, when you round your back, push off the floor with your hands.
Dog head down
Cow-cat pose prepares us for the dog head downward. This is a partially inverted pose that rejuvenates the mind. Physically, it opens the thoracic region, shoulders, and also strengthens the back and lengthens the legs, and stretches the hamstrings.
From the starting position, lift your knees off the floor and lift your hips up.
- Press with your heels on the floor, and actively push off the floor with your fingers.
- Keep your head between your hands with your chin towards your chest.
- Take five slow, deep, and attentive breaths in and out. This pose gives the body harmony and awareness.
Low Lunge Pose, Eagle Arms
By combining two parts of different poses, you get a pose that perfectly opens the hips and shoulders, while simultaneously stretching the spine.
- With the dog head down, lunge with your right foot forward and lower your right knee onto the mat.
- Straighten your back and make a garudasana with your hands, with your right hand under your left hand, and bring your palms together.
- Lift your elbows up, away from your chest, to open your upper back.
- Take three or four deep breaths and then lower your hands to the floor.
Active left and right turn
- From a low lunge, lift your back knee off the mat for an active lunge. Keep your left hand on the floor and lift your right hand up. Bend your right arm at the elbow to feel how the shoulder blades connect and the thoracic region expands.
- Take three deep breaths, place your hands on the floor, and switch hands. The right one remains on the floor, and the left one rises up.
- Breathe in three deep breaths in and out.
- Place your hands on the floor.
- Return to the dog head down and repeat the pose on the other leg.
Lean to the feet with hands in the lock
- Spread your legs shoulder-width apart, bend your knees slightly, lengthening the spine along the hips. The head remains heavy, and pulls all the weight down.
- Put your hands in a lock behind your back, and extend them behind you, elbows straight.
- If your shoulders are tight and your arms don’t lock, try grabbing a towel or a strap between your arms to increase your mobility.
- Remain in this position for several deep breaths.
- Return to starting position.
- From a tilt, turn your feet 45 degrees, and lower your pelvis between your legs.
- If your heels do not drop to the floor, spread your legs a little wider and help yourself with your elbows. Join your hands in namasta, and rest your elbows on your thighs.
- Stay in this position for a few breaths.
- Then place one hand on the floor, and extend the other up and look at it. The shoulder of the lowered hand rests on the thigh.
- Change sides.
Finally, fold your hands in namasta and smile. After all, you have done a very useful thing for yourself, and perhaps from now on, you will do it regularly. Just five minutes a day, they change life, body and mind, and health for the better, radically better!