This is not the first time I’ve mentioned that I am not a morning person, but I repeat — I am NOT a morning person. My first thought when I wake up in the morning is a quick calculation of how long to snooze my alarm. This type of mentality has led to countless rushed mornings and not having the type of mental preparedness I need to head into the workday.
Recently I came across an article that talked about the physical AND mental benefits of yoga pertaining to sleep. Certain stretches can help clear your thoughts and relax your body for the night. Other stretches can also assist in energizing your mind for the day ahead. And since I struggle everyday to wake up, I decided that yoga in bed may be just what I needed.
Now let me be clear about one thing — I don’t do yoga. I am also about as flexible as a stick. But you’ll find that these poses and stretches are something that even the most extreme amateur can do. And they can all be done sequentially in less than 10 minutes. If you’re a non-morning person like me, you should definitely give these a try!
1. Goddess Pose
Upon waking, throw off your covers to discourage falling back to sleep and lay flat on your back. Place the souls of your feet together with your knees open wide in Goddess position. Then let your hands rest away from your sides and take slow, deep breaths. Inhale and exhale for 10 breaths. Try to really concentrate on your breathing so you don’t end up back in slumberland.
2. Cat Pose
From your position on your back, roll over to your stomach and slowly rise to all fours in a table. Line your wrists up with your shoulders and knees with your hips to the best of your ability. Then arch your back upward into a bridge.
3. Cow Pose
From the cat pose, release your back muscles to flow down into a reversed arch. Exhale as your belly reaches down toward the bed. Allow these movements to really stretch your core by repeating them 5 times.
4. Child’s Pose
Next, slide your arms down until your face hits the bed in child’s pose. You can stay on top of your knees or spread them to open up your hips. Stay here long enough to fully meditate on what you’ll accomplish that day.
5. Seated Side Bend
By now, you should be feeling more energized. End out your bed yoga by sitting up in indian style for a side bend. Reach your right arm into the air on an inhale and, keeping the spine long, exhale and reach over your head to the left. Follow steps with your left arm and repeat 2 times, holding for a couple breaths on each side.
If you want to give your core and back muscles one last elongation before bidding your bed a “see-you later,” you can try leaning off the edge of the bed. This is not technically yoga, but we’ll call it Alice-thenics.
After that, you’ll be ready to conquer the day — starting with some puppy cuddles. However, I can’t promise there won’t be yawns to follow.