I thought I'd share with you a sequence that just keeps coming up for me. This has been my practice pretty much through the month of June. Sometimes I do it in two pieces, but sometimes I take about 75 minutes to complete the whole thing. Let's call it a practice to contain your energy. I hope you'll try it out:
*I do everything for either 3 or 5 breaths.
* I use the elevator exhale at the pubis in ujjayi. If this makes no sense to you, think of an elevator door closing and moving back and up to the next floor. The elevator is located between the pubis and the navel, so when you exhale the "root of your abdomen", more like the root of the transverse abdominus, draws in and up, engaging as much of the t.a. as you comfortably and gently can. Don't stress about this, especially in the first part.
1. crocodile, then add a frog leg one side at a time
2. wide leg child's pose w/ knees wide and big toes touch
3. narrow leg child's pose, with knees and feet together
4. down dog w/ 1 knee bent, other side, both knees, straighten high on tip toes, draw heels down, about 1/2 to 1 breath in each, and 3 in full dog
5. virasana on a block
Here is where I tune in! I have given myself this long to stretch the sleep from the bodymind.
6. Ong Namo Gurudev Name - I bow to the presence of God all around me and deep within me.
7. Ong Namo gurudev namo guru dev namo gurudeva x11
8. long ek ong kar - one creator truth is its name great is its wisdom x11
9. Using this mantra I then do 3 maha bandhas
10. seated cross legs - a minute of k-bhati - the exhale in bursts
11. 3 brahmaris - the bumble bee breath
12. supta baddha konasana with chest and head elevated, the breath is broken down into four parts: inhale, retain, exhale, suspend, as follows: 6-3-6-3, 8-4-8-4, 12-6-12-6, 12-12, 8-8, 6-6, rest the breath
13. crocodile , about a minute
15. locust series: in-one leg up, ex down, then one leg and opposite arm, then one leg for 3 breaths, other side, both legs, full locust to "X", full locust and down, then hold the "X" and the regular full locust
18. bridge with bandha rolling down
19. forearm plank x3 for 10 breaths - block high on inner thighs, squeeze block w/ inner thighs, lift block toward groins with outer thighs, mulha bandha, pull elbows toward toes and toes toward elbows. On the last one I lift one foot with each exhale, trying not to move or undo any of the building blocks of the pose. From here on, really get a sense of the elevator exhale as described above!
20. floating staff pose x3
21. lolasana x3 - I use blocks under my hands for these.
22. navasana to ardha navasana x10, then hold navasana for 10 breaths x2
23. ardha navasana with breath of fire for 1 minute
24. crocodile, child's pose, down dog, 1 leg dog to stretch the hips and thighs, you know, spiral out, spiral in
25. ardha uttanasana
Then I either go into:
tree, kick the leg out to the side and bring it back in, tiptoe tree, regular tree with arms up
viniyoga side stretch - wide legs in-lift right arm and heel, ex- side stretch, in - lower heel, ex, reach arm further over, in-back up, other side
virabhadrasana 2, ardha chandrasana, chappasana, trikonasana, out
uttanasana, roll down to malasana, roll down to supta baddha konasana, knees to chest, savasana
Or I do:
garudasana from utkatasana
virabhadrasana 3 variations
prasarita padottanasana bent knees, side to side, straight legs
uttanasana, roll down, spine stretches, like chakravakasana but seated with knees bent and feet on floor, roll down to hug knees to chest, savasana
And sometimes I only go from #1 to #18.
And sometimes my yoga practice is taking care of Blake, and that is the most uplifting practice of all!
May the longtime sun shine upon you...