Yogamama: Yoga on the Road
Got highway fatigue? Here’s a quick routine to help.
By Karri Jinkins
It’s road trip season, and whether that means a couple of hours behind the wheel to get to a weekend house or a long cross-country trip, there is almost nothing worse for your back than sitting endlessly in a car. One of the most effective ways to feel better is to stretch. Here is a quick series (10 minutes max!) of yoga postures you can do in a parking lot or at a rest stop.
Modified Surya Namaskar (Basic head-to-toe stretch)
Stand with your feet together and inhale, reaching your arms to the sky until your hands touch over your head. Exhale, bending at the waist, and reach your hands to the ground. Inhale, and with your hands still toward the ground, lift your head. Exhale, relax your head back down. Inhale, stand up, and reach your hands to the sky again. Repeat at least three times.
Trikanasana (Triangle pose)
Move your feet about three to four feet apart and turn your right foot perpendicular to your left. Inhale, reach your arms apart, parallel to the ground. Exhale, reach your right hand down toward your right shin, ankle, or foot. Hold and breathe for five counts. Inhale, and stand back up. Exhale, and repeat the movements on the left.
Parsvokanasana (Extended side-angle pose)
Move your feet three to four feet apart, and turn your right foot perpendicular to your left. Inhale, and stretch your arms apart, as in the Trikanasana pose. Exhale, bend your right knee and place your right elbow on your knee as you stretch your left arm over your left ear (so that you are stretching the entire left side of your body, from your heel to your fingertips). Inhale, lift back up to stand. Exhale, and repeat on the left side.
Virabhadrasana 1 (Warrior pose)
Step three to four feet apart, and turn your right foot perpendicular to your left. Inhale, turn to the right, and bend your right knee as you reach both arms up above your head and square off your hips to face your right knee. Hold for five to 10 breaths. Exhale, turn, and repeat on the other side.
Utkatasana (Chair position)
Stand with your feet and knees together. Inhale and bend both knees as if you were going to sit in an invisible chair, and reach your arms to the sky. Bring your hands together and keep your knees and feet together. Take five to 10 breaths. Exhale, come back to standing upright with your hands at your side.
Karri Jinkins is a writer who teaches Ashtanga yoga. She is also the cofounder of Yogamat Clothing, www.yogamatclothing.com. Contact her at: [email protected].