5 Pose Heart Opening Valentines Flow <3
February is the month of pink hearts, chocolates, roses, grand gestures, and LOVE. While I like to think of myself as the type of person who loves people to my greatest ability all year round, February is always a great time to take a step back and mindfully serve and love the people around me. It is also a great time to practice self-love. We often are too busy taking care of everyone else that we forget to the time to take care of ourselves and attend to our own needs.
Take this month to be your own valentine: take yourself on a coffee date, buy flowers to brighten up your favorite space, take a bubble bath with rose petals, treat yourself to your favorite indulgence, and best of all take the time to do yoga! Self-love is such an important aspect of leading a healthy and balanced life and is also the most often over-looked.
Challenge yourself to do one thing for YOU every day that brings you closer to your center, that brings you joy, and that fills with you love. After all, that’s what valentine’s day is all about!
Here are five yoga poses that you can add to your daily routine that will open your chest and heart: giving you that feel good, warm and fuzzy, valentine’s day feel every day of the rest of this month!
CHEST OPENER POSE : Have two blocks? Grab them and place them long ways at medium height between your shoulder blades and long ways, at medium or high height at the base of your head. If you don’t have access to two blocks, roll up a small towel or blanket and place between shoulder blades and under your head. Once you get the black or blanket situated comfortably let your knees drop out while the soles of your feet are glued together in Supta Baddha Konasana. Stay here as long as you want and enjoy the opening sensation!
PUPPY POSE : Findtable top with a neutral spine and then walk your hands out to the front of your mat, keeping your hips high and aimed towards the ceiling. Relax your head and neck while keeping your core engaged. Straighten your arms, feel as if you’re pulling your chest through your arms and keep lengthening the spine by sending your hips up to the sky. This heart opener will keep your chest feeling open all day long!
WILD THING POSE : Begin in down dog. On your inhale lift your right leg high into three leg down dog. Open your right hip and allow your right foot to drop down to the groundkeeping your right knee bent and straightening your left leg. Shift all the weight into your left hand, the outside of your right foot and your left foot. Keep breathing and let your head fall back behind you, extending and lengthening as you reach your right hand towards the front or the room or rest your right hand on your heart expressing your divinity, power and freedom. (Shake out and repeat on the other side!)
WHEEL (OR BACKBEND) POSE : Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet planted firmly on the ground. Walk your heels in close to your body as is comfortable for you. Bend your elbows bringing your hands above your head and place your hands on the ground with your fingers pointing towards your shoulders. Press your heels firmly into the ground, let out a large exhale, and send your hips up towards the sky. Pressing your feet and hands into the floor, lift your head off the floor and straighten or extend your arms. Spread the shoulder blades across the back and let your head hang so that ears are in alignment with your biceps. Stay for 3-5 breaths and ever so gently come back to the floor. This pose energizes the whole system and opens the heart, shoulders, back, and mind!
UPWARD FACING DOG POSE : Lie face down on the floor, bring your hands just under your shoulders and close to your ribs. Press all ten fingers down into the ground and straighten your arms. Press all ten toe nails into the earth engaging your knees, thighs and booty so that the only thing toughing the ground are your hands and the tops of your feet. Squeeze your shoulder blades together as you create the feeling of literally pulling your chest through your arms and forward. My favorite expression is to gaze up and let my head drop back. Breathe slowly and intentionally.
As you incorporate these heart opening postures into your daily routine remember to breathe and honor your body. The point of these postures is not to be perfect but to feel perfect. Gifting yourself the time to flow at your own pace and engage in self-care is the best valentine’s day gift you will ever receive!
*Consult a physician before you engage in any sort of activity. The above is meant for inspirational purposes; practice at your own digression.