FIVES

FIVE in FIVE
These quick sequences are simplified to five moves in five minutes, designed to be easily practiced anytime you need a physical or mental stretch, and personalized as you are inspired. Use them as-is or embellished to jumpstart your home practice. Play with your pacing, repetitions, adding moves as you feel them—listen and your body will reveal your best move for the moment—and bring your observations, discoveries, and questions to class. Remember to move on the breath—aspiring on the inhale, surrendering on the exhale. Post your sequence cards nearby for easy reference.
FIVE in FIVE (standing)

Here’s a standing morning practice for spinal vitality, to do while you’re brewing or brushing and still too groggy to resist. Use your kitchen counter, a chair or office desk like a ballet barre for support. Open the ribs and lengthen the spine on your inhale—contract the core and steady your pelvis on your exhale.

Open in mountain
1) upward facing hands overhead to side bends (R/L)
2) puppy dog with cat/cow spine stretches in puppy dog
3) plank to low plank (tri-cep push-up w/palms on countertop)
4) tree upright (R/L) with side-bends optional
5) twists (hips/feet pivot R/L with hands on countertop)
Close to mountain

You never need to touch the floor but if you’re missing a deep forward bend, practice the half sun salutation A with soft knees through chair to open and close each sequence. Repeat as time allows, then have your tea/coffee and start your day with a supple spine and heart.

Sanskrit Translations:
mountain = tadasana
upward facing hands = urdhva hastasana
puppy dog = ardha adho muka svanasana
low plank = chaturanga dandasana
tree = vrksasana
forward bend = uttanasana
half sun salutation A = ardha surya namaskar A
chair = utkatasana
FIVE in FIVE (reclining)

Here’s a reclining evening practice that can be done on the floor or even in bed for spinal, hip and hamstring release to ease tension before sleep, during the night, or when you wake up a little stiff from sleep. Open the ribs and lengthen the tailbone on your inhale—contract the core and level your sacrum on your exhale.

Open in corpse
1) pelvic tilts tailbone to waist, moving into pelvic clock circles
2) knee to chest (R/L) several times, then both knees to chest
3) supine spinal twist (R/L), releasing low back, engaging core
4) hamstring stretch (R/L), rotating into open hip if desired
5) bridge, releasing into reclining butterfly if desired
Close to corpse

Use this practice for deep core awareness, stretch and relaxation, and to relieve back pain. You can intensify the core work or simply melt into the stretch, depending on your needs of the day. Usually, our bodies and minds respond well to a balance of effort and ease in our actions.

Sanskrit Translations:
corpse = savasana
one knee to chest = eka pada apanasana
both knees to chest = apanasana
supine spinal twist = jathara parivartanasana
reclining hamstring stretch = supta padangusthasana
bridge = setu bandha
reclining butterfly = supta baddha konasana

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