In honor of February as heart health month and Valentine’s Day, I’ve created a yoga flow with poses to protect your heart and attract love into your life.
Often our posture and inner emotional state give off vibes that propel love and opportunity away – we seem emotionally or physically closed off. This practice will help to reverse that and bring love of self and the love of others, while improving cardiovascular health because of increased heart rate during practice, while increasing relaxation and reduced stress come with the full repetitive yoga breathing and greater lung function.
Yoga practice and it’s breathing, holding poses, flowing vinyasas, mediation, imagery and focus have been proven to:
–make you feel more in control
–increase feelings of positive mood
–make you breathe easier, not shallow
–increases the body’s ability to respond to stress more flexibly
–provide better body image
–increase more thoughtful eating habits, caring what you put into your body
–allow you to appreciate the now and live in the moment
–facilitates deep relaxation and helps practitioners sleep better
–detachment from negative situations
–provide strength, flexibility and better blood flow, helping your love life in the bedroom
Poses: cobra, upward facing dog, camel, triangle, fish, chest expansion, wheel, bridge, yoga mudras like lotus, savasana with block under shoulders.
Begin your practice with your hands cupped in yoga lotus mudra. Breathe deeply and focus the mind. Begin having an affair with your closest soul mate, yourself. Think of the ways that love and happiness exist in your life. Be grateful for them. Make the shift from looking only externally for love, and begin treating yourself like the love of your life, you’ll find your heart more open, feel more forgiving with yourself, and become more available to love others. You become stronger and more independent, more able to attract healthy real love. You look at love from others as a gift, but not something that your life depends on. Other’s choices won’t affect you as powerfully because you already have everything you need.
Open your eyes and begin sun salutations with chest expansion in mountain. After forward fold, chest expansion lunge, down dog and plank, lower to the mat for a heart opening cobra pose, later in the series it will be come upward facing dog, and other heart opener. These poses can go deep into the chest cavity to expose your heart and emotional, authentic self that you might not show to others. Move back to down dog, lunge, and open the heart with arms wide, on the opposing leg. Forward fold and then end in mountain with hands in prayer at heart center.
Next find camel’s pose with hands behind you below belt level and open through the chest into an upper back bend for several breaths. Forward fold to counter-stretch. Flow into a few warriors and then go into triangle and open the chest with the top hand spiraling open to the sky. As you open the space in your heart, you infuse your body and mind with loving thoughts, carrying that throughout your day.
After warriors and triangle on the other side, practice a standing posture like dancer, to bring joy into your life.
Next come to the floor for shoulderstand and heart-opening fish, as well as bridge and wheel.
End in savasana over a block (place it under your shoulder blades and rest the head back on a blanket). Either bend the knees or open the legs into bound angle. Focus on receiving the benefits from your practice. Through heart opening yoga poses, you practice giving your mind, body and soul the love it needs. This invites love to come to you from the outside. Happy Valentines Day. Namaste.
Fitness — fit it in this February.- Nikki