Poppy’s Yoga

Hello Poppy,

This web page is for you about your yoga. You can click or touch the underlined words to jump to different sections.

Out of bed

If you back hurts, staying in bed will not help.

Get out of bed. Stand up. Put your hands on a bench, chair, table, or counter. Rotate your torso forward from your hip joints and try to keep your back mostly straight. Firm your abdomen for support and slightly soften your knees. Look straight down. Then move. Sway. Feel your way into gently loosening your shoulders, back, butt, and legs.

Morning

Do this for a few minutes every morning. It wakes up how you use your muscles and will help you move better all day.

black modern dining chair without arms on white background

Sit toward the front of a firm chair without arms, like one of your dining chairs. Put your feet flat on the floor. Have your knees wider than your hips and your shins vertical.

  • Sit: Calm your mind and focus only on the sensations of how you feel, ignore everything else. Use your hands; feel where you have tension and give sore spots a firm rub.
  • Neck: Turn your head gently left and right. Tilt your head gently side to side.
  • Shoulders: Roll your shoulders forward and backward. Then pull one shoulder back at a time.
  • Pelvis: Rock your pelvis front and back. Turn your pelvis left and right. This wakes up your trunk muscles and is good for your back and circulation.
  • Forward fold: Tilt your torso forward from your hips, keep your back straight, and support yourself with your elbows on your thighs. Gently firm your abdomen to help support your back. And look at the floor in front of your feet.
  • Wide forward fold: Get your knees comfortably wide then do a forward fold.
  • Heel lift: Keep the balls of your feet on the floor and lift your heels up and down. This helps your circulation.
  • Leg extend: Sit at the corner of the chair with your knees wide and push one foot away. Tilt your torso forward from your hips and press an elbow or hand on your other thigh for support. Rub your muscles firmly while you rotate your extended leg. This helps wake up your thigh and stability muscles.

Monday & Friday

Do your morning routine simply and gently every day. And also try to do these poses twice a week on Monday and Friday or the day after.

Skip any part you want. Simplify as you want. And please freely ignore the counts. Doing some is so much better then doing none.

Give yourself 20 minutes to enjoy doing it. Don’t take too long at it. Don’t make it work or a burden that discourages you.

Sit on a firm chair of standard height without arms, like one of your dining chairs. Sit away from the back. Put your feet flat on the floor. Have your knees wider than your hips. Make sure to keep your shins vertical with your heels under your knees.

Rest your hands on your thighs. Let your upper arms relax and hang straight down from your shoulders. Sit up straight and relaxed. And look straight ahead at something to fix your eyes on.

All of the seated poses start from this position.

Sit

Sit well. Look straight ahead. Notice your back, pelvis, and shoulders.

Focus: Take a whole minute to not think and focus only on the sensations of how all of you feels.

Touch: Use your hands to firmly feel your shoulders, chest, back, butt, and legs.

Stand up

Stand up from the chair. Lift your toes softly and feel your feet press on the floor. Look straight ahead. Stand straight up. Adjust the tilt of your pelvis so your back feels comfortable.

Imagine: Feel inward and take a moment to imagine your sensations as you stand tall and relaxed and strong. Take a moment and image your sensations as you walk smoothly and comfortably.

Arms: Look straight ahead, keep your back straight, and raise your arms over your head. Reach up as hard as you can and hold that for a moment. Relax without lowering your arms. Then reach up really hard again. Hold, then relax slowly.

Cat-cow

Sit in the middle of the chair and rock your pelvis front and back from your hip joints. Bow your back toward the direction you move. With your hands pressing on your thighs, really try to push into it.

When you go forward, look straight ahead. When you go back, look at your knees.

Do it 6 times. Then turn your pelvis left and right 4 times while keeping your eyes and your shoulders straight ahead.

Elbows back

Sit near the back of the chair. Press your elbows to the back of the chair. Pull your shoulder blades down and together and hold a firm press of your elbows against the back of the chair for a 6-count. Relax slowly for a 3-count. Repeat 4 times.

Squat

Start seated. Put your hands where you like.

Rise with control. Look straight ahead the whole time. Work at being even. Don’t lean left or right. Try to lean forward as little as possible, do the work to keep your torso more upright.

Stand up straight. Soften your knees just a little. Tighten your butt and tilt the top of your pelvis back firmly for a 3-count, being careful of your low back. Feel the pull across the front of your pelvis.

Sit down slowly with control for a 3-count.

Do 4 to 6.

Forward fold seated

Tilt your torso forward from your hips and keep your back straight. Press your elbows on your thighs. Gently firm your abdomen for support. Pull your shoulder blades together and toward your butt. And look at the floor in front of your feet at a place that helps you feel your neck straight.

Feel and hold a gentle pull for a 6-count. Relax slowly for a 3-count without rising. Repeat 3 times.

Squeeze: Put your hands or your elbows on the outside of your thighs near your knees. Squeeze your knees outward hard for a 4-count without moving them much. Relax slowly for a 3-count. Repeat 4 times.

Wide forward fold

Spread your knees as wide as you can with comfort. It is important to keep your shins vertical and keep your heels under your knees.

Tilt your torso forward from your hips while keeping your back straight. Put your elbows on your thighs. And gently firm your abdomen for support. Pull your shoulder blades together and toward your butt. Look down at the floor at a place that helps you feel your neck straight.

Lean into it firmly for a 6-count. Relax slowly for a 3-count without fully rising. Do 6.

Squeeze: Press your elbows on the inside of your thighs near your knees. Squeeze your knees inward hard for a 4-count without moving them much. Relax slowly for a 3-count. Repeat 4 times.

Side: With your knees still wide, and while keeping your shins vertical, put both your forearms on one thigh near your knee. Have your upper arms straight under your shoulders. Pull your shoulder blades together and toward your butt. And firm your abdomen for support.

Lean into it firmly for a 6-count while keeping your butt fully on the chair. Then do your other side. Repeat 4 times.

Warrior 1

Sit sideways on the chair with one leg hanging off the front of the chair. Put your butt near one side of the seat so you can press your palms on the other side.

Tilt your pelvis back, away from your thigh on the seat. Use your hands for stability, not to press. Work at keeping your back neutral and not straining it.

Pull your leg hanging off the front of the chair. Use your butt muscles to pull it back, and feel the pull along the front of your thigh. Hold, then relax slowly. Do each leg twice.

Forward fold standing

Stand facing the front of the chair. Put your hands on the seat of the chair. Have your arms straight under your shoulders. Look straight down at the seat of the chair.

Have your back as straight as you can with your abdomen firm for support. Have your legs straight with your knees slightly soft.

Shift your butt left and right 3 times and hold a pull on the outside of your thigh for a 2-count. Swing your butt left and right in a semicircle 3 times and feel the pull move across the back of your thighs.

Bend one knee and keep your heel on the floor. Relax into the pull on the back of your opposite thigh for a 4- to 6-count. Then do your other leg. Repeat 4 to 6 times.

Put your feet wider than the chair. Shift your butt to one side and keep your arms and legs straight. Hold the pull in your groin for a 6- to 8-count. Then shift and do your other leg. Repeat 6 to 8 times.

Tripod: Stand with your feet close and your hands on the seat of the chair. Lift one foot off the floor keeping that thigh parallel with your other thigh. Keep the leg you stand on straight. Lower your bent knee as far as you can. Then raise your bent knee while keeping it close to your other thigh. Repeat 4 to 6 times then do your other leg.

Reach: Put both our hands on top of the back of the chair. Look straight down at the set of the chair. And sink into it.

Lunge on chair

Stand facing the front of the chair, about the length of your thigh away, and put one foot on the seat of the chair.

Tilt forward at your hips. Put your hands on the back of the chair or on the seat of the chair; change the position of your hands as you want. Keep your back straight and gently firm your abdomen for support. Bend your lower knee slightly to ease any uncomfortable pull.

Sway around gently being careful about your lower knee. Feel how you move and what is tight.

Lean into it for a 6-count. Then relax slowly for 3-count. Do it 4 times.

Then do your other leg. Sway. Then lean into it 4 times.

Tree

Stand beside the chair. Put your foot nearest the chair on the seat of the chair. Rest a hand on the back of the chair to help stability.

Tilt the top of your pelvis back and feel a pull across the front of your hip above the leg you stand on. Keep your bent knee above that foot and pull the knee back and feel a pull through that groin. Then do your other side, then repeat both again.

Before yard work

Do the leg extend and rotate to activate how you use your thigh and stability muscles before you go do a lot of yard work.

Sit at the corner of the chair with your knees wide and push one foot away. Tilt your torso forward from your hips and press your elbow or hand on your other thigh for support.

Feel and hold a gentle pull in your extended leg. Rub your muscles firmly while you rotate your leg.

Straighten up slowly and pause, then do your other leg. Then do both again.

After yard work

When you come in after doing yard work, as soon as you can do a couple of things to help your muscles.

Forward Fold

Sit toward the front of a firm chair without arms, like one of your dining chairs. Put your feet flat on the floor. Have your knees wider than your hips and your shins vertical.

Tilt your torso forward from your hips and keep your back straight. Press your palms or elbows on your thighs for support. Gently firm your abdomen to help support your back. And look at the floor in front of your feet.

Feel and hold a gentle pull for some part of a minute. Relax slowly and pause, then do it again 2 or 3 times.

Leg Extend

Do the leg extend and rotate again, just like you did before going out in the yard.

Back

Try one or a few of these poses when your back hurts.

Sit
Sit in the middle of a firm chair, like one of your dining chairs. Put your feet flat on the floor, have your shins vertical and your knees wider than your hips. Rest your hands on your thighs. Look straight ahead and just sit well for a few minutes.

Forward fold
Press your hands or your elbows on your thighs and bend forward from your hips. Hold a gentle pull in your back.

On 4 rest
Get down on your mat on your knees and elbows and rest your head on your crossed arms. And just let your back sag and rest toward the floor.

Knees up
Do this very gently. Do not pull your knees toward your chest. Rest your hands behind your knees or on your shins. And just rest into it.

Pyramid rest
This is the most relaxed position we have for your back. Take a couple of minutes to get into the pose well. Adjust and wiggle and get so that you feel very stable and feel that you can relax into it. Then also rub firmly into your back, pelvis, and thighs.

Next Time

Show me how things feel.

We will work together on the chair for you to learn things to do on your own.

We will work together on the mat to get things done for you.

Mat

  • Cat-cow wide
  • On 4 circles
  • Windshield wipers
  • Pyramid rest

Chair

  • Sit
  • Stand up
  • Cat-cow
  • Elbows back
  • Squat
  • Forward fold
  • Wide forward fold
  • Warrior 1
  • Half warrior 2
  • Warrior 3

Stand

  • Forward fold to chair
  • Lunge on chair
  • Tree