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Midday Fix: Sweat guru Jamie Walker demonstrates stress relieving yoga poses

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Jamie Walker

www.sweatguru.com

The Poses

Child’s Pose:
Child’s pose is a very relaxing and grounding pose. It can alleviate lower back pain and open up your shoulders, arms and hips. It’s a great pose to take at any time during your yoga practice or throughout the day — great for when you just need a minute. To do this pose:

Start in a seated kneeling position with your toes together and knees apart.
Hinge from your hips to fold forward letting your belly fall between your knees.
Extend your hands, palms facing down in front of you.
Extend through your fingers as you also push your hips back.
Continue to reach with your arms while at the same time separating your shoulder blades.

Standing Forward Fold:
Standing forward folds help elongate the spine and hamstrings. Forward folds are a great way to exhale the day, everything out and start over. It provides a calming effect to both body and mind. To do this pose:

Stand with your feet touching or slightly apart with toes facing forward.
Bend forward from the hips and reach top of head towards the floor.
Grasp opposite elbows and begin to sway slightly from right to left, shaking head yes and no (if it feels good).

Wide Legged Seated Forward Fold:
Wide-legged seated forward fold is a great way to stretch the inner legs (which often get neglected), as well as hamstrings and groins, helping to open up the pelvis and lower body. The pose is also great for stretching the spine and stimulating the abdominal organs. Like all forward folding poses, this pose is great for calming the brain, promoting relaxation and helping to reduce stress, anxiety and insomnia.

Begin seated with the spine tall and legs extended straight out in front of you.
Take your legs out as wide apart as you comfortably can, keeping feet flexed and active so the inner thighs don’t collapse inwards. Kneecaps should point straight up toward the ceiling and heels should be rooting firmly into the ground.
Place fingertips on the ground in front of you, just between your legs. Maintain the length along the spine, keep shoulders relaxed and chest open. Inhale.
Exhale and slowly walk fingertips forward until you find an edge that feels appropriate for you. Avoid going too deep — if your spine starts to round and shoulders collapse, back off!
If it’s comfortable, come down on palms, forearms or take your torso down onto the ground between your legs.

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