Yoga for sleep: Baddha Konasana (bound angle pose)
• Sit on the floor without slouching and bring the soles of the feet together in front of you, hands holding the feet or ankles.
• If you’re comfortable and able to sit without rounding the lower back, bring the feet as close as you can toward the groin.
• Inhale and lengthen the spine.
• Exhale and bend forward from the hips, keeping the spine long. Breathe in and out as you feel your muscles relaxing.
Best Health tip: If sitting in this pose is challenge enough, skip the forward bend. Sitting on a blanket or cushion can help tight bodies open up.
Yoga for sleep: Upavistha Konasana (wide-angle seated forward bend)
• Sit upright on the floor, without slouching.
• Extend the legs in front of you in a vee, placing hands behind the buttocks for balance. Only go so wide as is comfortable.
• Inhale and lengthen the spine, ensuring the lower back isn’t rounding.
• Exhale and bend forward from the hips, with hands in front of you. Focus on the breath as you lengthen the spine with every inhale and relax forward with every exhale.
Best Health tip: If sitting in this pose is challenge enough, skip the forward bend and keep the hands behind the buttocks; focus on sitting up without rounding the back. Try sitting on a cushion or folded blanket, or bending the knees and placing support under them.
Yoga for sleep: Thread-the-needle
• Lie on your back with the head flat on the floor. Bend the knees and place the soles of the feet on the floor.
• Bring the right knee toward the chest. Keeping the hips even, place the right ankle below the left knee with the right knee pointing to the right. Flex the right foot to keep the muscles engaged and protect the knee from strain.
• Lift the left foot off the floor and bring the left knee toward the chest. Bring the hands on either side of the left thigh for support. You should feel a stretch on the outside of the right hip. As you breathe in and out, try to bring both hips parallel.
• Repeat on the other side.
Best Health tip: Only go as deep as you need to to feel a gentle stretch.