In the last post, I presented a video talked about the “whys” of a detox practice. Now, to the details of the “whats”. I’ll do it Yoga Journal style:
Counter-indicators: (consider carefully before you practice if you have any of these) SI joint issues, serious low back pain, pregnancy. (#1 is build to be pregnancy safe, just back off the last twist).
Warm-up: Before doing any of these sequences, I’d recommend a couple of easy seated twists, down dog and/or dolphin, and at several Sun Salutations, either 4+ full Sun Cs or several Sun As and Sun Bs, as well as at least one warrior II. (If you’re rusty on suns, there’s tons of info about them here. This is something YJ’s online archive is great for.)
One alignment note, it’s important in any twist to be careful of where you’re twisting from. If the twist is primarily in the neck and shoulders, there’s not much to be gained except maybe a sore neck. But if you focus the twist on the ribcage and torso, that’s where the most benefits are.
Sequence 1- basic:
Utketasana– chair- with legs hip width distance, modified parivrtta utketasana– twisting chair- with one hand on a block instead of across the body, 5 breaths, step back (one or several steps) to modified parivrtta anjeniasana– twisting lunge, hand on block 5 breaths. Bring back leg forward and onto the floor for ardha matsyandrasana- seated twist. Vinyasa (high to low push up, up to down dog), end in down dog.
Sequence 2- all levels:
Utketasana to Parivrtta utketasana- twisting chair pose, 5 breaths. Step back (one or several steps) to parivrtta anjeniasana– twisting lunge. 5 breaths. Lower right hand inside right foot (or left inside left) and from your core, lift back leg for parivrtta ardha chandrasana– twisting half moon. After 5 breaths, land back foot halfway up the mat and set up pavivrtta trikonasana– twisting triangle. Vinyasa to down dog.
Level 3- intermediate/advanced. (Any of the arm binds and arm balances could be taken out to shorten and simplify the sequence.)
Utketasana to Parivrtta utketasana to parivrtta bakasana- chair to twisted chair to side crow. Back to parivrtta utketasana to parivrtta anjeniasana- twisted lunge. Bind the lunge, transition to baddha parivrtta ardha chandrasana- bound twisting half moon. Release through pyramid pose to set up uttana parivrtta trikonasana– intense twisting triangle. (Catchier name suggestions most welcome) Take each foot to the opposite side of the mat, twist over the front leg. Bind, then transition to parivrtta eke pada koundinyasana– twisting scissors. Transition to eke pada koundinyasana- scissors pose, to virabhadrasana II– warrior II, reverse warrior, transition to ardha chandrasana, half moon. Bind back foot for ardha chandra chapasana– sugarcane pose. Set gaze on the floor and transition to natarajasana, dancers pose. Cross back foot in front of front foot for modified uttanasana, vinyasa to down dog.
Thanks to Bill Frisell and Dave Douglas for making music that inspires me in general and when I practice- they are great artists, and so worth checking out. And yes, I’m in there on the third cut. Please send comments, suggestions, questions. And practice!