Relax before finals with simple positions
Relax before finals: top 5 yoga poses for stress relief
Child’s Pose (Balasana)
From a tabletop position, sink the hips back onto the feet. Rest the head on the ground between the arms. Clear the mind and bring the consciousness to the breath.
Take the right arm and slide it underneath the torso, attempting to bring the shoulder to the ground. Hold this pose for three deep breaths and then repeat for the left arm. Another option is to let the hips fall open and bring the knees apart to bring the torso closer to the ground.
Corpse Pose (Shavasana)
Corpse pose is an ending pose and used to bring the participant into shavasana, or final relaxation. Lay on the ground in the most comfortable position. This pose is used to bring concentration to the breath and could be used for meditation. The point of the pose is to fully relax the mind and body. Spend time in corpse thinking about positive thoughts and clear the mind of classes and upcoming finals.
Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)
In a lying position, plant the feet onto the ground, bringing the knees into the air. The arms should be resting by the sides of the body. Inhale. Lift the hips towards the ceiling. Engage the core, and squeeze the glutes after reaching the top of the movement. Hold this pose for five breaths.
To intensify the stretch, roll the shoulders underneath and clasp the hands behind the back. Another option for this pose is to make it a flowing movement. To do so, after reaching the top of the pose, squeeze the glutes. Exhale. Roll the spine back to the mat. Inhale, and complete the movement again.
Repeat as many times as desired.
Triangle Pose (Utthita Trikonasana)
From a wide legged standing position, turn the right foot outward. Bring the arms out to a “T." Inhale and shift the torso down bringing the right hand to rest on either the right shin, ankle or the ground. A yoga block or books could be used in this pose. The block or books raises the ground to the hand. The shoulders should be stacked, the spine is straight and the chest is open. Hold this posture for five breaths. This poses relieves tension and stress from the body as it stretches almost all muscles.
Forward Fold (Uttanasana)
From a standing position, inhale and bring the arms overhead. Exhale and bring the arms out to a “T,” with a flat back the entire way, hinge at the hips and move the arms towards the ground. Fold the torso over the legs. If the hands do not completely reach the ground, do not be discouraged. The point of this pose is to relieve the tension in the back of the legs.
While in the forward fold, sway the arms side-to-side. This motion loosens the tension in the muscles of the calves and hamstrings. Do not lock the knees in this pose. A soft bend in the knee is okay and often encouraged.
Source: Beth Shaw's YogaFit