Saturday, 3 October 2015

My Favourite Yoga Poses & Their Benefits*

Hello everyone!
When it comes to keeping fit, I have an on-off relationship with it. I used to thoroughly enjoy P.E. and I'd always partake in it and playing sports growing up. I went to dance classes and swimming lessons after school too. I led a very active childhood/early teens and for the past few years it has took me a while to find new ways to keep active/new hobby to take up whether it was during my time at University or now before I head off to work. I have eventually found a way to keep fit that I can adapt to my everyday life. I had always wanted to try yoga but took the route of pilates for a few years but one day earlier in the year I was shopping in Urban Outfitters with my Mam and I came across this little book and decided to purchase it and start to give yoga a real go. The book is really useful as it not only educates you on the variety of poses, with diagrams and a list of their benefits but it goes into detail about the history of yoga and the different types of yoga which I have found really interesting and it is also a small enough size to carry around with you if you wanted to. As I'm not the most flexible person in the world nor the strongest, I decided to go through the book and pick out the poses that I felt would benefit me personally and focus on those.
Mountain Pose: Increases body awareness.
Mountain Pose with arms up: Stretches the front and sides of the body.
Lunge: Strengthens the legs.
Plank Pose: Strengthens the arms, wrists and abdonimals.
Four-Limbed Staff Pose: Strengthens the abdomen, arms and wrists.
Upward-Facing Dog: Opens the front body and chest. Strengthens the back.
Downward-Facing Fog: Stretches the hamstrings, ankles, shoulders and calves. Reduces stiffness in the shoulders.
Warrior Pose I: Strengthens the legs and ankles. Stretches the front of the hips, adbomen, hip flexors and psoas. Strengthens the upper back.
Warrior Pose II: Strengthens the legs, ankles, upper back and arms. Stretches the inner thighs.
Extended Triangle Pose: Strengthens and tones the legs. Stretches the legs, hips, shoulders and spine.
Tree Pose: Improves balance. Strengthens the ankles and legs. Stretches the outer hips and inner thigh.
Dancer's Pose: Strengthens the legs, back and abdominal muscles. Improves balance. Stretches the front of the hip and thigh, and the chest and shoulders.
Side Plank Pose: Strengthens the side body, arm, legs and abdominal muscles. Improves concentration and balance.
Staff Pose: Encourages correct alignment of the spine and strengthens the supporting back muscles.
Bound Angle Pose: Stretches the inner thighs and outer hips.
Head-To-Knee Pose: Stretches the hamstrings and back muscles. Also stretches the inner thigh and lower back.
Cobra Pose: Strengthens the arms, chest and whole back body. Prepares the body for deeper backbends by warming up the spine.
Vest top & Leggings: New Look*
When I work out, I love nothing more than wearing proper workout gear, as it personally makes me feel more motivated. I was recently sent these lovely pieces from New Look (thanks Jodie!) as part of their brand new sportswear range they have brought out. The clothes feel extremely comfortable. The leggings I was especially surprised with as normally sportswear leggings tend to feel really thick and a bit stiff, but these aztec ones felt so soft, easy to move around in and basically feel like you were wearing normal leggings. The top has become a new favourite of mine, the quote 'Motivation gets you started, Attitude keeps you going' was something I really liked about this and found myself drawn to, again it is ridiculously comfortable and very roomy which is ideal for me, it is loose and hangs much lower but as it was a hot day when I took these photographs I decided to tie it to one side, also the arm holes are quite big so I teamed them with my Victoria's Secret sports bra. I think it'd look nice to brighten up the dark clothing by wearing a more colourful sports bra underneath so it peaks out, so I may keep that in mind for next time.
If you are going to work out from home my advice would be to definitely change it up once in a while where you work out as a change of scenery can stop it feeling repetitive, if you have a garden than that would be ideal to enjoy the fresh air whilst you are doing it.
Thanks for reading!

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*This post is in collaboration with New Look, all views expressed in this post are my own.
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