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Published on March 9, 2021

5 Energy-Boosting Yoga Poses to Try Anytime

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5 Energy-Boosting Yoga Poses to Try Anytime

We all go through low-energy cycles now and then—whether it is the lethargy that comes upon us as we sit all day in front of our computers or the exhaustion of keeping our home in order. We all need an instant energy boost as we go through our lives. That’s why we resort to different things like Caffeine, loud music, or maybe a power nap.

Why not resort to something that does not only work for the short term but also helps fix your low energy levels for the long run and brings in some extra benefits like increased immunity, elevated moods, and superior overall health?

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I have curated some energy-boosting Yoga Poses for you towards the same goal.

For complete practice, Yoga Asanas are assumed after warm-up. However, since these poses are for an instant boost, we have selected them in a way that they go from basic to intermediate, therefore, warming you up and building energy gradually to avoid chances of injury.

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Note:

  • In case of any pain or discomfort in the posture, please come out of it and try again. Be aware and listen to your body at all times. Maintain the awareness of breath while in the pose.[1]
  • Do not perform Yoga postures on a full stomach as that might hinder digestion and also make you feel uncomfortable during the postures.

Let us get started.

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1. Tree Pose (Vrikshasana)

    Image Source – http://blog.zenward.com/key-actions-vrksasana-tree-pose/
    1. Stand with your feet together, shoulders rolled back and core engaged.
    2. Plant your right foot firmly on the ground by stretching your toes slightly apart.
    3. Bend your left leg and place your sole on your right thigh, toes facing down, and heel towards the pelvis.
    4. Keep the heel as close to the pelvis as possible and the grip firm. Make sure that the left knee is completely facing towards the left side and not pointing to the front or sideways.
    5. Choose a point of focus in front and look forward, stabilizing yourself.
    6. Once you find your balance, bring the palms together into Namaskar Mudra[2] and stretch them over and above your head with elbows straight.
    7. Keep the focus to maintain the balance
    8. Take 5 deep breaths or up to 1 minute if comfortable. Inhalation and exhalation make one breath.
    9. Repeat on the other side.

    Contraindications/Modifications for Tree Pose

    • In case of uncontrolled hypertension, do not take the arms up. Keep them on the chest in Namaskara Mudra.
    • Be careful in case of ankle, knee, hip, and shoulder issues.
    • In cases of Vertigo and ear infections causing a problem in balance, perform with utmost care.
    • If maintaining balance is a problem, keep holding the bent leg with the respective hand on the ankle or shin and breathe.

    2. Warrior Pose 2 (Virbhadrasana 2)

      Image Source – https://www.yogajournal.com/poses/warrior-ii-pose/
      1. Stand with the legs apart at 4 to 5 feet distance. Find the balance between the two feet without leaning on either. In case you feel any pain in the knees or heels, reduce the distance.
      2. Turn the right toe towards the right 90 degrees, right heel in line with the arch of the left foot
      3. Keep the body in front. Do not move towards the right with the foot. Engage the core and tuck in the tail bone of the spine.
      4. Inhale and stretch both the arms up parallel to the ground, palms facing down
      5. Exhale, bend the right knee bringing it in line with the ankle and look towards the middle finger of the right palm.
      6. Keep pressing the right heel on the mat and consciously stretch both arms away from each other.
      7. Take 5 deep breaths or up to 1 minute if comfortable.
      8. Consciously keep the hips facing front and not going towards the right.
      9. Repeat on the other side.

      Contraindications/Modifications of Warrior Pose 2

      • Be careful in case of ankle, knee, hip, and shoulder issues.
      • In case of neck issues, don’t turn the neck. Keep looking in front.
      • Do not perform in case of Diarrhea, weak heart, or uncontrolled hypertension.

      3. Downward Dog pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana)

        Image Source – https://beinks.com/downward-facing-dog-pose/
        1. Come on all fours on the ground—knees and palms—and wrists in line with the shoulders and knees in line with the hips.
        2. Place the palms firmly on the mat with fingers stretched apart for good support, tuck in the toes, and straighten the knees while pointing the hips towards the sky coming into a semi-inverted position.
        3. Straighten the spine by coming only on the toes with bent knees for few seconds. If comfortable, place the heels on the ground and knees straight.
        4. You can adjust the distance between palms and feet now to make you feel more comfortable.
        5. Keep digging your heels and palms on the mat while keeping the hips pointing up. Look towards the toes.
        6. Take 5 deep breaths or up to 1 minute if comfortable.

        Contraindications/Modifications of Downward Dog Pose

        • Do not perform in case of heart conditions and uncontrolled hypertension.
        • Also not advised in case of vertigo, ear infections, and any kind of cranial lesions.
        • Be very careful if you have a history of a shoulder injury.

        4. Low Lunge Pose With Backbend (Anjaneyasana)

        1. While in the Downward dog pose, bring the right leg forward and place the foot between the palms. Place the left knee on the ground, toe relaxed.
        2. Sit up and lift the left ankle gradually sliding the left leg back to the point where you do not feel any pressure at all on the left knee.
        3. Inhale and stretch both the arms up, finger pointing to the sky or bring palms together in Namaskar Mudra.
        4. Roll the shoulders back and bend back bringing the backbend from the upper back opening the chest to the maximum. Look up.
        5. Take 5 deep breaths or up to 1 minute if comfortable.
        6. Go back in Downward Dog pose and repeat on the left side and then relax in the child pose.

        Contraindications/Modifications of Low Lunge Pose

        • Be careful in case of ankle, knee, hip, shoulder, and neck issues.
        • In case of neck issues, don’t turn the neck back. Keep looking in front.
        • Do not perform in case of heart conditions and uncontrolled hypertension.
        • Also not advised in case of vertigo, ear infections, and any kind of cranial lesions.
        • Be very careful if you have a history of shoulder injury.

        5. Sitting Spinal Twist (Ardhmatseyndrasana)

        1. Sit with both legs stretched forward and spine straight. Make sure you are sitting on both hips and not leaning on one.
        2. Bend the left leg while keeping it on the mat and place the heel of the left leg touching the right hip.
        3. Bend the right foot and cross it over to the left touching the left hip, knee pointing to the sky.
        4. Take the right arm back and place the right palm in line with the right hip. Support the spine with the right elbow, keeping it straight. Do not lean back on the arm.
        5. Inhale and stretch your left arm up, exhale completely and twist towards the right hooking the left elbow outside of the right knee. If possible, you can extend the left arm to grab the right ankle.
        6. Neck parallel to the right shoulder. Look in front.
        7. Take 5 deep breaths or up to 1 minute if comfortable.
        8. Repeat on the other side.

        Contraindications/Modifications of Sitting Spinal Twist

        • Be careful in case of knee, hip, shoulder, and neck issues.
        • Do not perform in case of severe back pain, slip disc, or internal organ issues.
        • In case of neck issues, don’t turn the neck back. Keep looking in front.
        • Do not perform in case of heart conditions and uncontrolled hypertension.

        Time to Perk Up With These Energy-Boosting Yoga Poses

        Apart from all the benefits from stretching in each posture to targeting specific organs, notice that in Yoga, your body is getting the added boost of oxygen with each deep inhalation and deep detoxification with each exhalation. You can not only transform your mood but also your life by boosting up your energy levels in a way that is sustainable without any side-effects through the age-old techniques of Yoga.

        Do not wait anymore. Try these energy-boosting yoga poses today and see how you feel before, during, and after the posture. Namaste.

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        More Energy-Boosting Yoga Poses

        Featured photo credit: Katie Bush via unsplash.com

        Reference

        More by this author

        Roli Jain

        Internationally Certified Hatha Yoga Coach & Therapist. On a mission to transform lives through Yoga after transforming my own.

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        Last Updated on October 20, 2021

        7 Daily Stress-Management Rituals that Improve Your Productivity

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        7 Daily Stress-Management Rituals that Improve Your Productivity

        If you’re trying to be as productive as possible, stress will always be your biggest obstacle—and it’s not an easy one to overcome. To do it, you’ll need to develop a plan to make stress management a core component of your daily routine, but doing that takes commitment. The good news is that if you succeed in learning how to manage stress, you’ll unlock your potential and be well on your way to peak performance. But first, you need to learn how to make it happen.

        The best way to do that is to learn about and integrate some stress management rituals into your daily routine. To help you get started, here are seven tips on how to manage stress and improve your productivity.

        1. Give Yourself an Extra Hour in the Morning

        If you were to do some research on some of the world’s most successful—and productive—people, you’d notice that many of them have one thing in common: they tend to be early risers. Apple’s Tim Cook gets out of bed before 4 AM each day.[1] Michelle Obama is already getting in her daily workout at 4:30 AM.[2] Richard Branson gets up at 5:45 AM each day, even when he’s vacationing on his private island.

        There’s a good reason why they all do it—once you reach the point in your day that your work schedule kicks in, you no longer have control of your time. That means you have a limited opportunity every morning to reduce your stress by taking care of the things you need to do without anyone making other demands on your time.

        What’s important about this isn’t the time you get up. The important part is getting up early enough to start your day without feeling rushed. For most people, getting up an hour earlier than you normally would is sufficient. This should give you ample time to complete your morning tasks without having to hurry or fall behind.

        But when you implement this ritual, be careful. Don’t do it at the cost of getting the right amount of sleep each night. If you do, you might increase your stress instead of relieving it. Sticking to a proper sleep schedule and getting enough sleep is, in itself, a critical part of stress management.[3]

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        2. Determine and Review Your Most Important Tasks Each Day

        If there’s one productivity tip that almost all experts agree on, it’s that you should spend some time before bed each night to write down your three most important tasks for the following day. But if you want to maximize that practice and turn it into a stress-buster, you should turn that notion on its head.

        Instead, you should do this as a part of your morning routine. There’s a couple of reasons for this. First, it’s that our always-on, always-connected business world means your priorities can change overnight, literally. You may list your top priorities, go to sleep, and wake up to find them woefully out of date. That means the best time to set your priorities for the day is in the morning. This will keep those priorities up to date and let you think about them before the distractions of the day begin. But don’t stop there. You should take some time before bed each night to review that day’s priorities.

        Ideally, you’ll be able to check them off as accomplished. If not, though, think about what prevented you from getting to them. This is your chance to figure out some of the common daily interruptions that get in your way. Chances are, these also cause some of your stress. So, spend the time before bed game-planning how to remove those interruptions and stressors from your day. If you make this a habit, you’ll be more productive and far less stressed out in no time.

        3. Save Your Emails for Later in the Morning

        Another tip on how to manage stress is to save your emails for later. One of the key causes of stress comes from our inability to cope with the unexpected. If you stop to think about it, what is your most prominent source of near-constant unexpected information every day? You guessed it—it’s your email.

        Now, you can’t simply ignore your email. The only thing you can do about your email is to learn how to manage it most effectively. But no matter what you do, it’s going to remain a source of daily stress and distraction. That’s why you should make a habit out of giving yourself an email-free hour or two at the beginning of each day’s schedule.

        In that time, try to tackle one of your daily priorities and get it taken care of. Your email will still be there when you’re done. And when you do get to it, you’ll do so in a much better frame of mind knowing that you’ve already gotten some real work done before having to deal with anything unexpected. That alone will improve your mood and reduce the amount of stress you’ll feel—no matter what’s waiting for you in your inbox.

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        4. Take a Walk After Email Time

        Since you’ll have to deal with your email sooner or later, there’s no way to completely avoid the stress that will come with it. Although you’ll be in a better frame of mind after putting off your email to get some real work done, you’ll still feel some stress when you get to it. That’s why you should make a post-email walk a part of your daily routine.

        Taking a walk is one of the best ways you can relieve stress. It’s a form of meditation that will put you back into the right condition to be productive, and there’s no better time to do it each day than after taking care of your emails.

        Ideally, you’ll want to take a walk outdoors, and preferably in the most natural setting possible. If you’re in an urban environment, a nearby park will suffice. Studies have demonstrated that walking in such environments for as little as 20 minutes per day leads to an overall reduction in the body’s cortisol level.[4]

        Cortisol, if you’re not aware, is your body’s main stress hormone. It helps regulate your blood pressure, energy levels, and even your sleep cycle. Every time your stress goes up, cortisol production also increases, throwing your body into chaos. So, taking a walk right after dealing with your email will help you to relax, reset, and get ready to be productive for the rest of the day.

        5. Reserve Time to Research and Plan a Vacation

        By now, everybody knows that taking vacations every now and then can improve your productivity and lower your stress level. But did you know that even thinking about a vacation can help you to reduce your stress? It may sound strange, but it’s true.

        A Cornell University study in 2012 found that the anticipation of a positive experience—like a vacation—can reduce stress and make you measurably happier. It logically follows, then, that adding to that anticipation each day can maximize the stress-relieving effects of a vacation.[5]

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        To do it, set aside at least a half-hour each day to research or plan an upcoming vacation. You can read about destinations. You can research airfares. You can even look at places to stay in locations you’re interested in visiting. And if you’ve already got a vacation booked, use the time to take a deep dive into what your destination has to offer.

        This is an especially important daily ritual to observe right now, while the COVID-19 pandemic may be limiting your vacation options. If it’s been a while since you’ve been able to take a trip, the act of planning your next vacation will have a therapeutic effect. With vacation rental bookings still hovering below 50% in most major markets, there’s no doubt that the vast majority of people are in desperate need of their next stress-relieving vacation.[6]

        6. Create a Shutdown Ritual to End Your Day

        Another simple yet effective way to manage stress is to create a shutdown ritual. Just as it’s important to get your day off to a stress-free, unhurried start, you’ll want to do the same when the day is through. It’s because after spending each day in a reactive mode—dealing with the unexpected—you need to get back into a proactive mode to relax.

        Studies have shown that having the perception of control over what you’re going through acts as a buffer against negative stress.[7] In other words, feeling like you can manage even a small chunk of your own time counteracts the stress from the parts of your day when you can’t.

        This also means that your shutdown ritual can be whatever you want it to be. You might write in a journal, get in a quick light workout, or prepare your outfit for the following day. As long as you’re the one in complete control over what you’re doing, anything goes. Just make sure that you include the aforementioned review of your daily priorities somewhere in your routine!

        7. Set a No-Screens Rule to End Your Day

        Even though your shutdown routine is important, there’s one more ritual to include before bedtime that will help you manage stress. Spend the last 30 minutes to an hour before you plan to go to sleep observing a strict no-screens rule. Not only will this give you time to disconnect from the stresses of your day, but it will also allow your body to make a transition into a proper sleep mode.

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        The screens we use—smartphones, tablets, laptops—all emit a wavelength of blue light that disrupts our sleep patterns. It’s the same type of light that our bodies recognize as daytime, so seeing it is like telling your brain that it’s the wrong time to be asleep.[8]

        By eliminating all sources of this type of light before bedtime, you’ll increase your odds of getting restful, deep sleep. And since getting proper sleep is one of the best ways to manage your stress, this is the perfect way for you to end each day.

        Final Thoughts

        Although a totally stress-free lifestyle would lend itself to achieving maximum productivity, not many people will ever manage to live that way. So, the next best thing is to work some or all of these daily stress-busting rituals into your day to minimize the inevitable stress instead. Doing so will put you in the best possible position to succeed. And there’s no better antidote for stress than to make the most out of every day no matter what it has to throw at you.

        More Tips on How to Manage Stress

        Featured photo credit: Kaboompics via kaboompics.com

        Reference

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