9 Gentle Yoga Warm-Up Exercises

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Are you searching for effective yoga warm up exercises? Without a doubt,  warming up before you start your yoga workout helps prevent potential injuries during your sessions. Prior to warming up your body may be stiff and cold and may not be in an ideal condition for doing yoga poses. 

Warm-up exercises increase the amount of blood flowing through your body and prepare your joints for more vigorous movements. Ideally, warm-up exercises should take 5 to 15 minutes to be effective.  You’ll know you’ve had an effective warp if your heartbeat elevates and skin feels warm. If you’re not sure of where to start with yoga exercises, we’ve compiled 9 of the best warm-up sequences you should consider.

Top 9 yoga warm-up exercises you should consider

Easy Twist

Position your legs in a simple pose and twist to the right-hand direction, while bringing your left hand to your left knee and the right hand on your back. Make sure you make a careful and gentle gaze over your right shoulder. Since this is just a warm-up, you should not strain to make deep twists. You can also use this chance to do a forward bend. 

Pelvic Tilts

To perform this yoga exercise, lay down on your back and bend your knee. Press your back gently against the floor, tilt your pelvis close to your face, and release it. This warm-up exercise will help to warm the spine and reduce stiffness to allow it to move freely.  The main reason why this exercise is important is to ensure that the abdominal body is doing most of the work. If done correctly, the practice will ensure that your back is flexible enough before starting your yoga classes. It also provides coordination of your breathing and movement patterns.

Plank

With all four limbs, tuck your toes and lift your head high. Stretch your legs until you attain a straight back and you’ll start to feel the energy from your head to the toes. Engage your lower abdominals and draw your shoulders down and far from your ears. Also, ensure you pull the ribs together and breathe deeply. 

Plank will help you to balance on your arms while using the entire body to support you. It is a fantastic way to strengthen your abdominal area.

Leg Stretch

Start working on your legs by lifting them from the floor, either one at a time or both simultaneously. Ensure that your low back is firmly rooted and your pelvis is neutral, lift one leg perpendicular to the floor and focus the sole of your foot at the ceiling. You can choose to lift the other leg or remain on the floor. Try straightening your legs, however, if you find this difficult for you can keep them bent. Lift them to a height you feel comfortable.  When your legs are lifted, start to flex and point your foot. This yoga warms up exercise helps in stretching your hamstrings, ankle, calves, feet and the front of your shins. 

Eye of the Needle Pose

While you are on your back, cross your right ankle over the left knee to attain the eye of the needle pose. Since it’s a warm-up, keep your left foot on the floor, especially if your hips are tight. If you want a more significant stretch, bring your left knee close to your body.  If you are a beginner, go easy on the stretches since your hips can be a little stiff. Once you are done with one side, switch your legs and stretch the other side. 

Cat Cow Stretch 

Cat cow is another key yoga work warm-up exercise to consider. When practised well, it helps your body to stretch properly. This pose helps the body to warm while making the spine more flexible. It stretches the neck and the back torso while stimulating and strengthening your abdominal organs. The spinal movement also stimulates the kidney and adrenal glands. The pose also helps develop postural balance throughout the body. It brings the spine into the right alignment, which will help in reducing the chances of back pain when doing a more rigorous exercise. 

Goddess Pose

Goddess pose is a static squat which helps in the external hip opening. It lengthens the abductors of your thighs and strengthens your calves, quadriceps, core and glutes as well as the upper body. 

Stand at the top of your yoga mat in a mountain pose with your big toes touching the floor, heels apart, hand at the sides and turn your palms forward. Make a few steps and pivot on your heels towards the centre part of your mat until you face the long side of your rug. Turn your toes around 45 degrees and bend your knees to ensure that your knees are parallel with the floor. Draw your shoulders back and lift your chest. Extend your arms above your head and turn your palms towards each other. Hold the posture for 30-60 seconds while breathing slowly and deeply. 

Eagle Pose

Stand up straight and stretch your arms forward. Align your back and cross your arms against each other. Bend your elbows, cross your forearms to allow your palms to face each other. Bend your knees and place a; the weight on your foot.  Pull the right knee close to your chest and cross your right thigh above the left thigh and hook the right foot behind the left one. Stay in this posture for 15-30 seconds and repeat it with the opposite foot. The eagle pose helps to improve your body balance while increasing flexibility and strength.  The carriage will also help to loosen your legs and hips and stretches your shoulders, thighs and upper back. 

Child Pose

Child pose is a fantastic way to help connect with your body and your breath before your yoga session begins. Start by kneeling on the mat, distance your knees and allow your toes to touch. Stretch your arms forward and bring your forehead close to the carpet. Ensure you breathe deeply as you enjoy the exercise. 

Conclusion

Just like any other sport,  warming up before your yoga session is essential for enhanced performance and injury prevention. Even though most of the yoga exercises are soft or gentle, it is crucial to prepare your body by performing the warm exercises recommended above.

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