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Yoga in bed

Updated on April 28, 2008

Beginning practice


Yoga as a physical practice is available for everyone, any time. Here is a gentle offering for beginning a yoga practice. As yoga is the union of mind-body-breath, one of the first places to begin is bringing awareness to the body. Let's start in bed.

Before falling asleep, purpose to wake earlier than usual. Any amount to time will do and can be increased as one's practice extends. On awakening, notice the body - its sensations. Find rest in the sensations without shifting to change them. Observe and be aware. (If one must race to morning elimination, by all means, go. Return to the bed.)

Find the breath. Bring awareness to the inhaling through the nose. Resting at fullness, sip an extra breath in. Exhaling, pull the belly toward the spine. Puff out a bit more. Pulling the belly toward concave, prepare for the next expansion. Continue attending the breath for eight cycles.

In these moments allow the mind to be completely occupied by inhaling and exhaling.

Take a deep cleansing breath. Relax.

Expand the morning practice by coordinating breath and movement. Here is a simple set of poses that gently open the hips and spine in preparation for the day:

Corpse pose (extend the legs long allowing the ankles to rest comfortably in a natural position, allowing the shoulders to rest on the bed, nose toward the ceiling, tongue in the lower teeth. Modification - bent knees)

Knees standing (Inhaling place feet flat on bed)

Reclining abdominal twist (Exhaling gently drop knees to the right)

Knees standing (Inhaling draw knees back up)

Reclining abdominal twist (Exhaling gently drop knees to the left)

Knees standing (Inhaling draw knees back up)

Unwinding pose (Exhaling pull knees to chest - hand on back of thighs)

Knees standing (Inhaling return feet to surface/bed)

Reclining bound angle (Exhaling drop each knee toward its side - bringing the soles of feet together)

Knees standing (Inhaling draw the knees back up)

Corpse pose (Exhaling extend the legs returning to natural breath, focusing on bodily sensations)

This series can be repeated as time and attention allows and it useful at waking and rest. Yoga calls us to mindful of our mind, body and breath and with this to listen to what I bodies say. Remember to honor any limitations the body offers and check with a professional for additional support or instruction.


Awareness begins with breath

Anjali Mudra - Palms sealed before the heart
Anjali Mudra - Palms sealed before the heart


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