THE BLOG

The 10-Minute Recharging Yoga Sequence

06/05/2015 10:25 am ET | Updated Jun 05, 2016

Whether you serve as a volunteer, teacher, parent, or yoga instructor, helping others can be energizing and exhausting all at once. It's important to practice techniques that help you refuel and take care of yourself--as well as those you serve. This balancing, restorative sequence encourages you to "drink" as you "pour." Seated meditative poses support you as you drink in and recharge, and Warrior Poses, inversions, and backbends help you find strength as you pour out offerings to the world.

Prep work

From seated, close your eyes and fold the sides of your tongue inward for Sitali Pranayama (Cooling Breath). Inhale through your curled tongue like a straw. Close your mouth and exhale through your nose, creating a "ha" sound in the back of your throat. If your tongue doesn't curl, practice with a flat tongue. Repeat this cycle for several minutes.

girl demonstrating seated cat and cow pose

Seated Cat-Cow Pose

1 minute, 8-10 breaths

Come to Sukhasana (Easy Pose), close your eyes, and ground through your sitting bones. Place your hands on your knees. Deeply inhale to lean forward, rolling your shoulders back and bringing your heart forward. Then exhale to softly press your chin into your throat and roll your spine into gentle flexion, engaging your abdominal muscles. Drink in through an open heart on the inhalation, and pour out by engaging muscular energy as you exhale.

girl demonstrating seated half moon pose

Seated Half Moon Pose

1 minute, 8-10 breaths, each side

Open your eyes and place your right fingertips beside your right hip. Walk the fingers out, pressing the right shoulder blade into your back by externally rotating the shoulder. Inhale to extend your left arm up and exhale to reach it to the right, rotating your left shoulder back and expanding your left rib cage. Inhale, shift your gaze skyward; exhale, rotate your head and gaze at the ground. Exhale to release and switch sides, including the cross of your legs.

girl demonstrating seated spinal twist

Seated Spinal Twist

1 minute, 8-10 breaths, each side

With a long spine and grounded hips, bring your hands to Anjali Mudra at the center of your chest. On an inhalation, extend both arms up. On an exhalation, place your left hand on your right knee and your right hand on the ground behind you. Inhale to imagine your breath traveling up your spine and extending through the crown of your head. Exhale to press your navel toward your spine, externally rotate your right shoulder, and lift through the heart. Inhale back to center and switch sides.

Have a few more minutes? Continue the full sequence to help you recharge.

chelsea jackson headshot

About Chelsea Jackson

Chelsea Jackson, PhD, has a 200-hour hatha yoga training from Kashi Atlanta Urban Yoga Ashram. Jackson is also certified by Yoga Ed to teach yoga to children, and earned her PhD from the Division of Educational Studies at Emory University in Atlanta. She founded chelsealovesyoga.com, a platform for discussion on yoga, race, and diversity; is a member of the Yoga and Body Image Coalition; and created the Yoga, Literature & Art Camp for teen girls.