Flat Belly

Legs Up The Wall – Foundations of Yoga

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What’s up everyone, welcome to Yoga With Adriene. I’m Adriene, and today we’re learning one of my favorite poses in the whole entire world: Legs Up the Wall. So, we’re going to kick our feet up and absorb the amazing benefits of this fantastic yoga pose. And to do that, I’m going to take you right over here to the Yoga Corner. This is the Yoga Corner’s debut, I haven’t done yoga over here yet, I don’t think. So to get started, I want to say this. I stayed in my street clothes for this one on purpose; because this is a posture that you can do almost anywhere. And it’s really lovely especially if you’re on the go, on the road, in an airport even. Some airports have yoga rooms now. First thing you do when you get to your hotel after a day of travel. This is great hotel yoga.

After a long day at a festival or an event. This is a great way to kick your feet up. You can do this in your bed. You can do this against any clean wall. And I’m going to go ahead and use the yoga mat and blanket here. But just want to say you don’t need fancy yoga stuff to do this one. So, I’ve laid out my mat here. I have a blanket. If you don’t have a blanket, it’s okay. You can use a pillow from your hotel bed, or your bed at home, or you don’t actually need this but it’s just a nice little support for the lower back and sacrum.

So, with the blanket or the pillow I’m going to take it and I’m going to just leave a little bit of butt room, as I so professionally call it. A little bit of butt room, from the wall to the blanket or the pillow. And naturally, I’m going to gracefully come in here and sneak my butt into the space that I left for it. Magically my blanket or my pillow will come to support my lower back but you might need some adjustments. So those are also really fun and graceful, they look like this. And so, what I’m doing is I’m allowing my pelvis to have this awesome tailbone down towards the ground, in this little space here this little nook.

And I don’t know if you can see this. Really allowing the weight of my legs, and the hips sockets to drop down into this beautiful little nook I’ve created for it. Whilst still supporting the lower back. This feels amazing. I’m already in heaven, heaven, heaven. Now I do remember the first time I came into the posture, really feeling like a lot going on here. For one, I couldn’t straighten my legs all the way. So if your knees are bent, no prob this is great. And if the blood is flowing the opposite direction, for the first time in a long time, it might be quite intense. So that said, you can take breaks by bringing the knees nice and wide.

Soles of the feet together. And of course nice long smooth deep breaths. We can still practice this without a pillow or a blanket it’s just nice to have that lower back support, and it’s a little more restorative this way. From here I can rest the hands gently on the belly or the ribs. If you’re wanting a more restorative practice, maybe for your spirit, or your heart, maybe hands on the chest. Shoulders relaxed, elbows nice and wide. If it’s hot outside you’re wanting to cool down your body and calm the nervous system, interlace the fingertips. Open elbows, nice and wide, and we maybe use the thumbs here extended to massage the neck and the back of the head. So there’s lots of options. We can also simply rest the arms gently at our sides. So we have lots of options here, as the blood flows in the opposite direction, we breath deep nice natural long breaths.

So, we breath consciously but we keep it nice and natural. And what I mean by that is we don’t need to do an Ujjayi breath here or Kapalabhati, or anything. We just let the rhythm flow. Mindful breaths, and that’s that. Beautiful Viparita Karani, one of my favorite poses for when I travel. Also, you know we have a couple of wonderful festivals here in Austin, Texas. This is the place to go after a long day at the fest. And this is where my friends and I and my loved ones go after a long day, you know in boots or in heels. We kicked our legs up like this, after a day trip to Disneyland. The whole family can get involved. Again take breaks when you need too, bending the knees. This is a nice restorative variation here of Legs Up the Wall. Just take a little break, and then when you’re ready back up you go. In time you can get this nice stretch of the hamstrings as you straighten the legs, but in due time. You don’t need to push that here. We can keep the knees nice and soft.

To come out of the posture, we of course release. Hug the knees into the chest and melt on over to one side. And then I’ll use the palms to press back up. If you have a pillow or blanket you might sit on it now. And we’ll just take a moment to come to cross-legged, and notice how we feel. So sit up nice and tall. We come to Sukhasana here, for just a moment. And notice how you feel. It’s so awesome to have these powerful tools of yoga. You don’t need anything fancy, you don’t need any fancy wall. Again, I’m in my street clothes. Two colors of denim. Just to show you you can do this on the go, and keep it in your tool-belt. Your natural healing tool-belt. I love you guys. Leave questions or comments below. I’d love to hear about your experience with this pose in particular, as it is one of my favorites.

Let us know your story, how this pose has benefited you if you are already a practitioner. I’ll see you next week. Free yoga videos every Wednesday. We complete the ritual by drawing the palms together and bowing to one another, namaste. .