Good morning, beautiful day – how can yoga and breathing exercises help me stay positive

I hope everyone is doing well. I thought I will share some ideas about how you can start your day more energised and happier. To get your body working I recommend having a lukewarm glass of water with a slice of lemon after waking up. You can prepare it the night before and leave it next to your bed, so you don’t have to get up for it. That will clean and hydrate your body telling it that it is time to start functioning. 

Afterwards, you can do a few easy yoga and breathing exercises which further help you to get the (mental and physical) energy you need for the day. Start with sitting either on a chair or on the floor with your legs crossed (or even still in bed). Take a few long inhalations and exhalations. Focus on your abdomen and start with 3 or 4 counts of inhales and 3 or 4 counts of exhales. With practise you can increase to 5 or 6 counts (increasing the counts will also increase your lung capacity). Now close your right nostril with your right thump and inhale and exhale slowly through your left nostril. Repeat 3 times and then change sides closing your left nostril with your right index finger. Inhale and exhale slowly through your left nostril. Repeat 3 times. Lower your hand and breath deeply and slowly through both nostrils. This is a good exercise to balance both body sides and one which can be used if you start to feel nervous or stressed at any point during the day.

You can continue with some good stretches for your legs, arms and upper body. Keep on sitting and bend slowly forward; you can straighten your legs or bend them a little if your lower back hurts. Stay there for a while letting your spine bend and your stomach compress – it will give your digest system a good stimulation. Following this forward bend you can lay on your abdomen, bring your elbows on the floor and place your chin into your hands. That gives your spine a nice and easy extension. You can read your book in that position, too but always come out very slowly.  Now that you have bend forward and backward think of a side twist for your spine which you can do in sitting or standing (think Socrates “If you would seek health, look first to the spine”). Finally, you can always include a balancing practise in your daily activities, eg preparing your meals in the kitchen. If you do that standing up, then lift one foot and place it on top of the other one or against the inner leg. Don’t forget to change sides in order to keep your body balanced.

These are just a few ideas which can be modified and extended by many other movements (always according to your abilities and physical health). I hope you will try those or others as I am convinced that they can help you – alongside nutritious meals – to stay strong and happy. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions in that matter. I wish you all well.

Nicole Herpich

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