Can’t even bend to touch your toes? Let these 8 yoga asanas make you flexible
By NCVC Staff | Published on Sep 21, 2023
Are you unable to bend down and touch your toes? Before you resign yourself to a life of inflexibility, consider the transformative power of yoga. This ancient practice offers a variety of asanas that can make you more flexible in a safe and effective manner. And contrary to popular belief, yoga is not just for those who are already flexible!
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In fact, incorporating yoga poses for flexibility into your routine is highly recommended by health experts. The essence of yoga lies in keeping the body active, gradually enhancing overall flexibility. As a beginner, the key is to start with slow-paced asanas that stretch your entire body.
Let’s explore some super-easy yoga poses for flexibility, perfect for beginners:
1. Tree pose or vrksasana
Kickstart your yoga journey with the tree pose, also known as the one-legged balancing pose. This pose doesn’t require flexibility, but rather, balance. Regular practice of vrksasana can improve your balance and strengthen the bones in your hips and legs. To get into the pose, center your body weight, stand on your right leg (with your right foot resting on your right inner thigh), and put your hands together in front of you. Hold the position, breathe, and then switch legs.
2. Bridge pose or setu bandha sarvangasana
The bridge pose is ideal for those who lack flexibility. It stretches the chest, neck, and spine, while also rejuvenating tired legs. When practicing this pose, focus on holding it to stimulate your abdominal organs. Regular practice not only increases flexibility but also reduces knee and back pain.
3. Wide-legged standing forward bend or ardha uttanasana
If you struggle with bending forward due to tight hamstrings, hips, or lower back, the wide-legged standing forward bend is the answer. This pose targets the back of your legs, hamstrings, and back. Bend your body forward until you feel a stretch in your legs, ensuring your lower back remains straight.
4. Cat-cow pose or chakravakasana
The cat-cow pose is a gentle flow that brings flexibility to your spine and neck, and gently strengthens the abdomen, hips, and shoulders. It also opens up the chest and promotes healthy breathing patterns. Anyone can begin practicing this pose, regardless of their current flexibility level.
5. Downward facing dog or adho mukha svanasana
Don’t worry if you can’t keep your knees straight while performing downward facing dog. Even with bent knees, you’ll still reap the flexibility-building benefits of this asana. The key is to maintain a straight back. This pose stretches your back, hamstrings, and shoulders, and also strengthens your upper body. So, don’t miss out on its incredible benefits.
6. Chair pose or utkatasana
Utkatasana, also known as the chair pose, is a challenging asana that strengthens your thighs and ankles while toning your leg muscles. It is a fantastic stretch for those lacking flexibility, as it is relatively straightforward and feels great. Additionally, it helps reduce stiffness.
7. Plank pose or phalakasana
Believe it or not, the plank is a yoga pose that even inflexible individuals can master. Instead of focusing on flexibility, concentrate on maintaining a straight body position and holding the pose for a few seconds. This creates tension in your core, legs, and arms, toning your muscles.
8. Child’s pose or balasana
Whenever you feel tired during your yoga practice, switch to the calming child’s pose. It soothes your mind and stretches your back muscles. Plus, it’s incredibly easy to do.
Remember, you may not be able to master all these yoga poses immediately. However, with regular practice, you can gradually loosen your tight muscles and improve your flexibility. Embrace these asanas and let yoga transform your body and mind.