When it comes to being around your family (and extended family) during the holidays, there are a few things you know to be true: your uncle will get a little too ‘eggnog happy’, you’ll dive into seconds of your moms famous holiday ham and mashed potatoes, and you’ll experience escalated levels of stress.
Keep calm and yoga on!
Here’s some of the best yoga ‘de-stressors,’ you can do to relax the mind, calm the body, and get a short (and much needed) break away from parents, in-laws and cousins! No matter what the madness of the holiday season brings on, you can treat this guide as you go-to anxiety buster!
The Cat Pose
For this pose, get on your hands and knees, and begin with a straight back. Take a deep breath in, and curl your back up (as though you’re a cat that’s been frightened). Bring your navel in, and exhale for a count of five. As you do, make sure that your shoulders and neck are down. Focus on your breath, and bring your back to its starting position. Arch your back up, and inhale counting to five. Repeat.
The Child Pose
No matter what family member has you stressed out, or how much the holiday crowds have you frazzled, the child’s pose will help to sooth, comfort and de-stress your biggest worries. Start on all fours, and lower your forehead down the floor as you stretch your arms out (fully extended) to the floor as well. Inhale while counting to five, and inch your hips back towards your feet. Feel the stretch in your shoulders and hips. There’s no feeling quite like it!
The Chair Pose
Stressing can be minimized when you focus your attention from the anxiety or worry you’re experiencing, to the motion of your breath—and the chair pose will help you do just that! Start by placing your feet (which should be hip-width apart) firmly on the floor. Next, bend your knees just slightly, so that looking down, you can’t see your feet below. Pull your belly in just slightly as you inhale, and contract your belly as you count to five. If you can, count to ten—it just depends on your endurance and fitness level. During each inhale, lengthen your side waists. By practicing this first thing in the morning, you’ll not only beat stress, but also burn fat. It’s the perfect exercise to implement in your daily routine during the holidays, and year round!