Basic Practice: Legs, Abdomen and Core

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In each of these poses, think of the following three actions:
  • Strengthen and lengthen the inner thighs.
  • Widen the hip creases and lower abdomen.
  • Strengthen the sides of the waist and either stretch them towards the head (most of the poses), into the floor (Ardha Navasana/Half Boat Pose) or towards the ceiling (Setu Bandha/Bridge Pose and the Sarvangasana variations).

The Sequence:

Opening Vinyasa:
[Hold each pose for several breaths.]

Child’s Pose
Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
Child’s Pose
Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
Uttanasana (Intense Stretch Pose) walking the hands back to the feet
Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
Plank Pose
Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
Uttanasana (Intense Stretch Pose) stepping or hopping the feet forward between the hands
Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
Plank Pose
Plank Pose with the toes pointed
Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
Uttanasana (Intense Stretch Pose) stepping or hopping the feet forward between the hands
Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
Plank Pose
Plank Pose with the toes pointed
Urdhva Mukha Shvanasana (Upward Facing Dog Pose)
Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
Uttanasana (Intense Stretch Pose) stepping or hopping the feet forward between the hands
Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
Plank Pose
Plank Pose with the toes pointed
Urdhva Mukha Shvanasana (Upward Facing Dog Pose)
Plank Pose with the toes pointed
Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
Uttanasana (Intense Stretch Pose) stepping or hopping the feet forward between the hands
Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
Child’s Pose

Tadasana (Mountain Pose)

Vrkshasana (Tree Pose)

Virabhadrasana 2 (Warrior Pose 2)

Utthita Trikonasana (Extended Triangle Pose)

Parshvottanasana (Intense Side Stretch Pose)

Virabhadrasana 3 (Warrior Pose 3) variation
• Loop a shoulder-width belt around the wrists behind the back.
• Press out into the belt to strengthen the arms and stretch the sides of the torso from the hips to the head.
• Go into the pose with the arms behind the back in this way.

Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)

Baddha Konasana (Bound Angle Pose)

Paripurna Navasana (Full Boat Pose) Cycle:
[Hold each stage for a few breaths.]

Dandasana (Staff Pose) with a foam block between the feet
Paripurna Navasana (Full Boat Pose) prep with the legs bent, feet off the ground and the hands on the floor
Paripurna Navasana (Full Boat Pose) prep with the legs bent, holding onto the thighs
Paripurna Navasana (Full Boat Pose) prep with the legs bent and the arms extended forward
Paripurna Navasana (Full Boat Pose)

Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)

Ardha Navasana (Half Boat Pose) Cycle:
[In this cycle, keep the lower back on the floor. Hold each stage for a few breaths.]

Resting Pose with the feet flat, the knees up and the hands on the abdomen
Ardha Navasana (Half Boat Pose) prep with the feet flat and the head, chest and shoulder blades curled up
Ardha Navasana (Half Boat Pose) variation with one foot flat and the other leg lifted, both sides
Ardha Navasana (Half Boat Pose) variation with both legs lifted
Resting Pose with the feet flat, the knees up and the hands on the abdomen

Setu Bandha (Bridge Pose)
• Feet up on blocks, holding on to the ankles directly, or with a belt.

Sarvangasana Cycle with a chair:
Halasana (Plough Pose) with the feet on the chair
Eka Pada Sarvangasana (Single Leg Shoulder Stand) with one foot on the chair, both sides
Salamba Sarvangasana 1 (Shoulder Stand 1)
Halasana (Plough Pose) with the feet on the chair

Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclined Bound Angle Pose)

Shavasana (Corpse Pose)


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