Ocnutrition’s Blog

Cool Your Workout
July 27, 2010, 7:33 pm
Filed under: Exercise

Summer has arrived and now that “June gloom” is over, the weather will be heating up.  To counter balance the effects of the season, choose cooling activities such as swimming or a long walk at dawn or dusk.  On your yoga mat, there are a variety of cooling poses to choose from.  Right now, let’s limit ourselves to forward folds, more specifically paschimottanasana.

I would recommend this pose at the end of your exercise/yoga routine for a calming and cooling effect.  Of course, don’t try this with a full tummy!  To get into paschimottanasana, first sit on your sitting bones on the floor (this can be practiced with a chair, sitting bones at the edge of the seat, legs straight, heels on floor and toes pulling toward the face).  Cross your legs and sit comfortably working on erecting the spine, rooting through the sitting bones and extending through the crown of the head.  Gently roll the shoulders back and let them slide away from the ears.  Feel the expansion at the collar bones.  From here, extend the legs in front of you, knees and toes pointing to the ceiling.  Bring the finger tips to the floor on either side of your hips and keep the spine erected, shoulders relaxed.  All the muscles of the legs are engaged in this pose.  With the feet flexed, inhale your arms overhead and as you exhale fold forward and down.  Let your hands rest where it’s comfortable for you (floor, knees, thighs, feet, etc).  Keep the back of the neck long by tucking the chin slightly.  Inhale and straighten the spine half way up; exhale and fold deeper into your pose.  Repeat 3 times.  With your last exhale, round forward and enjoy the fold. Be aware of your lumbar spine and knees.  Respect your body and move carefully during your practice. Stay in paschimotanasana for 5 more breaths.  To come out, slowly inhale the arms forward and up over head and exhale hands to heart.  Add a twist on each side to bring balance back to the spine.  Enjoy!


Note:  If you have low back or knee issues you should move carefully into paschimotanasana.  To ease into the pose, a blanket can be placed under the seating bones.

This information was brought to you by Just for the Health of It, a state-of-the-art personal training and yoga studio in the heart of Orange, and Marie Claude-Linteau, Registered Yoga Teacher.  For more information please contact:

Diane McConahay, B.S.
Certified Personal Trainer and Yoga Instructor
(714) 639-0494

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