MAT-LESS HOLIDAY YOGA

This little yoga flow is perfect for when you’re going away on holiday or are travelling home for Christmas and don’t have the space to carry a yoga mat. Flow through this yoga sequence with or without a mat and get creative with the transitions between poses. There’s some strengthening and stretching poses in there, so it’s a great all rounder you can fit in anytime of the day, as a little pick-me-up!

BREATH IN ENERGY

Start by standing up tall, engage the legs, pull the tummy in and up to find a little lift in the chest. As you inhale visualise gathering up energy and as you exhale bring it back down towards the heart. Run through this 3-5 times, flowing with your breath.

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CHAIR POSE

Bring the feet together and as you inhale raise the arms and sit back into an imaginary chair. Have a peak down at your feet - if you can’t see your big toes, shift the bottom back further. The majority of your weight should be in the heels and the belly button pulls back towards the spine to lengthen the lower back.

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FUNKY CHAIR

From chair pose, bring one ankle across the knee (keep the foot flexed to protect the knee joint) and sit down lower. Bring the hands into prayer to help you balance. This will stretch into the glutes and hips, whilst also strengthening the stand leg. The core will also be doing a lot of work to keep you balanced.

WARRIOR 3

Flow into warrior 3 with control and as slowly and mindfully as possible. Engage the core to help stabilise you and work towards finding a T shape with the body. Don’t worry if you fall out of it, take a breath and re-find your focus.

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HIGH LUNGE

From warrior 3 lightly step the back foot down and bend the front knee. The transition into this pose is just as important as the actual pose itself, so see if you can slow it down and land the foot with as little sound as possible.

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3 LEGGED DOG

From downward dog raise one back and up, but keep the hips square to the ground. Evenly distribute the weight in the hands and push through the grounded foot – this will stretch out the calf muscle more.

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FALLEN STAR

You can come into this from downward dog or a plank pose. Really press down through the feet to help you lift up the entire front side of the body. As you inhale puff up the chest more and reach the top hand higher. Relax the neck in whatever way is comfortable for you.

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WIDE LEG STRETCH

From fallen star gently lower down to the ground. Flex the feet and sit up tall on an inhale and as you exhale fold over to one side. As you inhale, lengthen through both sides of the waist and exhale to go deeper into the pose.

From fallen star gently lower down to the ground. Flex the feet and sit up tall on an inhale and as you exhale fold over to one side. As you inhale, lengthen through both sides of the waist and exhale to go deeper into the pose.

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FORWARD FOLD

Using the ‘peace fingers’ and thumb grab a hold of the big toes (bend the knees as much as you need to, to do this). From here, use the strength in your arms to pull you closer to the legs. Drop the elbows out to the sides to allow space around the neck. This is a big hamstring stretch so take your time and come up really slowly to avoid getting a head rush!

BACK BEND TO FINISH

To counter pose the forward bend, move into a standing back bend. Engage the legs and core to control the movement and lift up with the chest to avoid caving into the lower back. This can feel quite intense so keep the breath strong and controlled.

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