Energizing Poses_1Energizing Poses2_2Energizing Poses3_3Energizing Poses4_4Wide Legged Fold Collage

Practicing yoga when you’re tired or groggy can almost serve as a shot of espresso, without the jitters. That’s why so many people, beyond the work-life convenience, choose to practice first thing in the morning. The deep connection to breath, blood circulating throughout the body and heart-opening postures can wake you up from the inside out. Every yoga posture has it’s own set of benefits; some aid in sleep and relaxation, others for meditation, and then there are the energizing postures. These 5 poses are guaranteed to make you feel awake, balanced and charged! Read the corresponding instructions for each asana below:

We recommend warming up, anytime before you intend on practicing, with 3-4 sun salutations to increase flexibility, blood flow and find breath connection before standing poses. Watch this video on how to do it.

  1. Virabhadrasana II (Warrior 2): This pose is incredibly empowering. You’re strong, grounded and focused.
    1. Come to a wide-legged stance so that your feet are directly underneath your arms when extended, the heel of your front foot should be directly aligned with the inner arch of your back foot (heel-to-arch alignment)
    2. From the hip socket, begin to tuck the hip of your front leg back – your hips should not be neutral here, you are standing in external rotation from the hip joint
    3. Bend your front knee until it is directly over your ankle as you firmly ground through the outer arch of the back foot, your back leg is extremely strong and active here
    4. Keep your arms extended straight out from your shoulder sockets, as you relax your shoulders down your back to keep space in your chest and neck – stretch through the fingertips
    5. There are two opposing actions happening here: your hips are moving externally while your torso and chest are working neutrally towards the wall – keep your lower belly drawing in and your hip bones working together
    6. Gaze directly past the fingertips of your front hand and stay for 7-10 breaths
  2. Reverse Warrior: This is a great opportunity to stretch your entire side body with an elongating stretch and chest opener.
    1. Stay in the alignment from the feet to the hips from Warrior 2 (above), this does not change
    2. Begin to drop your back hand onto your calve or hamstring (not the knee)
    3. Starting all the way from the front hip point, begin to extend your front arm over head as you find length and elongation in your torso
    4. Be careful not to dump into the low back or back body here – keep the front knee bent over your ankle and your back leg working really hard to stay straight, continue to find extension rather than simply ‘falling’ back
    5. Gaze towards your top hand and draw your lower belly in, stay for 10-15 breaths
  3. Ardha Chandrasana (Half Moon): This pose represents the dividing energy of the sun and the moon, ‘candra’ is actually translated in English to a beautiful illuminating light, often symbolized as the moon. Balancing poses are great for the energy levels in the body because they force us to really focus on the present.
    1. Stay in the same alignment in your feet to your hip from Warrior 2 and Reverse Warrior (above)
    2. Begin to straighten your front leg and shorten your stance about 4-5 inches, place a block forward of your front foot (to help balance in the pose)
    3. Look down, and on an exhale you will begin to put a slight bend in the front leg and begin bearing the weight forward as your back leg starts to lift off the mat, press your bottom hand into the block (or mat) for balance
    4. Tuck your lower belly in and begin to extend your top arm straight out from the shoulder socket
    5. Experiment gazing down your torso all the way to your feet, you should be able to see the toes of your lifted leg – this ensures you are in correct alignment
    6. Relax both of your shoulders, especially the bottom one, it has a tendency to creep towards the ear since we are bearing weight there – but it’s important to keep widening the collarbones and opening the chest, this is a chest opening posture too
    7. Choose the gaze that works best for balance: at the floor, to the side, at your top fingertips – stay for 7-10 breaths
  4. Parsvottanasana (Upward Plank Pose): This pose utilizes a lot of back strength and shoulder flexibility. It requires a tremendous amount of concentration and vigor.
    1. Come to a seated position with your legs extended straight in front of you (this is called Dandasana in Sanskrit)
    2. Place your fingertips 4-5 inches behind your hips and facing forward, bend your knees and place your feet on the floor (together)
    3. Take a deep inhale, and on your exhale you will press firmly into the hands and lift the hips off the mat as your legs begin to straighten
    4. Work on getting the soles and toes of both feet on the mat as the inner thighs draw together
    5. If this isn’t working for you, you can do it with bent knees (variation here)
    6. Let your head relax back and gaze towards the tip of your nose, continue working the thighs and the collarbones widening – stay for 5-8 breaths
  5. Upavistha Konasana (Wide Angle Seated Forward Bend): This is an intense hamstring and hip stretch that is relaxing, but at the same time, carries so much energy through the entire body and creates a lasting vigorous feeling.
    1. Come to a seated position (Dandasana) as mentioned for Parsvottonasana (above)
    2. Extend your legs about 90 degrees apart at an angle and flex your feet, you can always sit on a blanket if you cannot create length here
    3. Internally rotate your thighs, extend your torso and begin to walk your hands forward – you can use a block (as pictured) to rest your forehead on
    4. Continuously draw your quadriceps into your hip sockets and extend through the heels of the feet – make sure your spine is not rounding here, you should have a flat back (this means you might not fold that far, that’s ok!)
    5. Gaze down or in front of you, stay for 20-30 breaths

Have questions? Feel free to leave a comment below! Namaste.

Pants | Alo Yoga
Bra | Alo Yoga
Mat | Manduka
Block | Manduka

Share This: