A Basic Yoga Sequence
Child’s Pose (Balasana)
Rest on the Earth. Allow gravity to carry the weight of your concerns into the loving support beneath you. Gently rest your attention upon our breath, allowing it to soften, lengthen and deepen. Stay in Child’s Pose for at least seven cycles of breath, more if you need it.
Cow / Cat Pose (Bitilasana / Marjaryasana) 7x
Coming up onto hands and knees, continue to gently rest your awareness on your breath and allow it to guide you through seven cycles of Cow/Cat.
Downward Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana)
High to Low Plank Pose (Kumbhakasana to Chaturanga Dandasana)
Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana) 3x
From a neutral table-top position, tuck your toes and lift your hips up and back into Downward-Facing Dog. Feel free to bicycle your legs, bend your knees and otherwise loosen up as you relax and lengthen your sides. Return your attention to your breathing and stay in the pose for seven cycles of breath.
Come into a high plank, hold for one or two cycles of breath, and then ease down into low plank…
(Note to self: study Why Knees, Chest, Chin Is Not a Chaturanga Alternative (YogaInternational.com))
…and then into cobra (the low variation unless you’re feeling extremely supple).
Three cycles of breath in cobra, and then push up and back into Downward-Facing Dog and repeat this sequence (Downard-Facing Dog, High to Low Plank, Cobra) for a total of three sets.
Finish in Downward-Facing Dog and then hop or step your legs forward to the front of your mat and roll gently upward into…
Mountain Pose (Tadasana)
Take a moment to check and adjust your vertical alignment, and then, as with Child’s Pose, allow gravity to take your cares and anything you’re holding into the Earth. If it’s wandered, return your attention to your breath and breathe through seven cycles in Mountain Pose.
Sun Salutation (Surya Namaskar) 7x
When you’re ready, flow through this variation on the Sun Salutation, seeing if you can allow your breath to move you.
Repeat 7x. Don’t exert yourself to the point that you break the thread of your breath.
Tree Pose (Vrksasana)
After completing your Sun Salutations and resting for several cycles of breath in Mountain Pose, move into Tree pose on the site of your choice. Relax for seven cycles of breath, keeping your gaze steady on a single point. Switch sides and repeat.
(Note: I was having trouble with balance and came up with a modification that worked for me. I though I made it up, but here’s a picture of it!)
Rag Doll Pose (Baddha Hasta Uttanasana)
Relax into Rad Doll Pose, seven cycles of breath, shaking out anything you might be holding, sighing it out, and then find your way into a seated position.
Bound Angle Pose (Badhakonasana)
Use props under the knees if need be and relax for seven cycles of breath. If desired, fold forward.
Half Lord of the Fishes Pose (Ardha Matsyendrasana)
Be aware of the heart opening and maintaining a vertical spine as you spend seven cycles of breath on each side.
Easy Pose (Sukhasana)
Take an easy seat, propping as necessary so that you can sit easily with a vertical spine.
Releasing your weight into the Earth, draw your attention to the breath and set the intention to abide in stillness and silence. Allow each breath to sweep away any rising thoughts.
If you become aware that you’ve got caught up in a train of thought, release it without worry or judgment, return to your breath, and continue abiding in silence.
Abide in this ease for 15 minutes.
Child’s Pose (Balasana)
Camel Pose (Ustrasana) 3x
Release again into the Earth, letting go of everything, resting upon her support.
Come up and ease into Camel Pose. Be aware of the heart opening. When it’s enough, or too much, return to the shelter of Child’s Pose. Repeat 3x.
One Legged King Pigeon Pose (Eka Pada Rajakapotasana)
From a neutral table-top position, or from Downward-Facing Dog, ease into One-Legged King Pigeon and rest for seven cycles of breath.
Release gently and move back into Downward-Facing Dog, and then back into the pose on the other side, and rest again for seven cycles of breath.
Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)
Transition from Pigeon through Downward-Facing Dog to a seat, and then lie back, rest on the Earth for a few moments, returning to your breath, and then coming into Bridge Pose. Stay in Bridge for seven cycles of breath. Rest and repeat if desired, up to 3x.
Knees-to-Chest Pose (Apanasana)
Bring your knees to your chest and allow your lower back to release, rocking gently side-to-side as desired.
Supine Spinal Twist Pose (Supta Matsyendrasana)
Ease into a supine spinal twist on each side, drawing awareness again to the heart opening, and to the support of the Earth beneath. Seven cycles of breath on each side.
Corpse Pose (Savasana)
Final rest. Use a blanket, eye pillow and any props you need to withdraw your senses from the outside world. Note the effortlessness of the heart opening as the Earth takes the weight of your body. Rest in spacious awareness.
Arise gently from your rest and take an easy seat. Place palms together over the heart center. Intone AUM three times, dedicating the peace and love of your practice unto all beings. Place your hands over your brow center and bow to the divinity within you. Namaste.