Who says you need to be on your yoga mat to practice yoga? On the occasion of World Yoga Day, we present to you top five super easy yoga poses that you can do when your car is stationary or stuck in a traffic jam. Destress the yoga way!
How: This one’s so simple; you can practice it anywhere. Sit with your spine erect. Now inhale deeply but slowly through your nostrils, drawing your breath all the way into your lower abdomen. Notice your abdomen expanding. Keep inhaling until you feel your diaphragm expanding and your chest rising. Then, when you feel you can’t inhale anymore, start exhaling slowly and feel your chest collapsing, your diaphragm relaxing and your abdomen going down.
Why: This deep breathing exercise will calm your nerves, clear your mind and help you focus.
How: Many of us involuntarily perform this exercise whenever we feel strain in our neck muscles. Here's how you can do it the right way. Sit straight and slowly let your head roll back until you are looking at the roof of your car. Next, slowly bring your left ear close to your left shoulder, without lifting your shoulder. Then, roll your head to the front, bringing your chin close to your chest. Now bring your right ear close to your right shoulder and finally back to staring at the roof. Repeat this in the counter-clockwise direction as well.
Why: Long drives can really strain your neck muscles. This exercise goes a long way in relieving the stress.
How: This asana is a derivation of the Garudasana or eagle pose. Sit straight with feet flat on the floor. Stretch your arms out at right angles with your fingers pointing to the roof of the car. Now, place your right arm over your left arm and try to bring both palms together. Hold for a few breaths and then release. Repeat on the other side.
Why: Give your shoulders and upper arms a good workout with this pose.
Cow face pose
How: The Sanskrit name for this asana is Gomukhasana, meaning the ‘cow face pose’. Move forward in your seat and sit straight; place your left arm behind you and then take your right arm over your right shoulder and try to get both palms to meet. It might be difficult at the start, but just try to get as close as possible. Hold for a few breaths and release. Repeat on the other side.
Why: The cow face pose stretches your arms, chest and shoulders to relieve the stress you’ve accumulated from sitting hunched up in your car seat.
Half spinal twist
How: The Sanskrit name for the pose is Ardha Matsyendrasana. It is really easy to do and very effective. Move forward your seat and sit erect with your feet flat on the car floor, two feet apart. Take a deep breath and without moving your hips slowly twist your upper body to try and face the back of your car. Hold for a couple of seconds. Then exhale and slowly come back to your normal posture. Repeat on the other side.
Why: As is evident from the name, this pose stretches and massages one of the most important parts of your body – your spine.
So next time you're stuck in a traffic jam, maintain your inner peace with some car yoga!
What was your favourite Drive Time Yoga pose from this list? Tell us in the comments below!