Yoga Poses That Help You Celebrate Your Body

September 2, 2016  |  
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Yoga can look intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. You don’t have to sweat in a hot room, join a yoga studio or even leave the living room to get the benefits of a yoga practice.

These 10 poses are a great introduction to yoga’s power to help you celebrate your body. Each pose will give you confidence in your inner and outer strength, and release some of those aches and pains that have been holding you back.

So grab a yoga mat, put on some soothing music and start your day with these poses. You will get your morning and your mind off to a great start.

Cat-Cow Pose

It’s the perfect place to start any yoga routine. Match your movement and breathing to help you get in the zone and in tune with your body.

Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

Goddess Pose

The goddess pose is easy to master even when you’re just beginning. Do it every day and you’ll get an extra confidence boost when you see the amazing things it does for your behind.

Remember to match your movement with your breathing: exhale when you move down and inhale when you come up. For a more advanced move, hold the squat a little bit longer each day.

Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

Camel Pose

Get on your knees and spread them hip-width apart. Put your hands on your lower back with all 10 fingers pointing toward the ground. Then lean back slowly. Eventually you’ll be able to reach back and hold each ankle.

Camel pose takes a little while to master, but you’ll feel great when you do. As you lean back, it opens up your heart to release negative emotions. Plus, the pelvic stretch is great for relieving cramps.

Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

Locust Pose

Start this pose lying down on your stomach, hands behind your back. Inhale and lift up as far as you can, holding the pose, and then exhale before heading back down to the starting position.

Over time you’ll increase your back bend and flexibility. Plus, this move helps you deal with bloat and improve your digestion as a lot of energy is focused in your abdomen.

Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

Plank Pose

Whether you call them chicken wings or plain old “flab,” no one likes the wobble going on at the back of their arms. Plank pose will give you Michelle Obama arms — and a pretty tight core.

Starting on your hands or elbows, hold your plank while looking forward. The goal is to maintain the pose for as long as you can while breathing slowly in and out.

Soon you will be able to hold on longer than you thought you could and both your arms and abs will be tight.

Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

Warrior I

Coming out of a downward dog, lift one leg in the air before bringing it forward and planting it in front of you. Lift up, reaching into the air, and bend down into the knee of the leg you brought forward.  Inhale as you move into position, and exhale as you bring your arms into the air, holding for several seconds.

Standing and breathing deeply in the warrior position builds self-confidence. It’s also great for shaping your thighs and lifting your behind.

Image Source: Shutterstock

Image Source: Shutterstock

Warrior II

Tap deeper into your power (and feel the burn in your behind and thighs) by opening your arms into Warrior II right after Warrior I. Turn sideways (and turn your back foot out), then bring the arm closest to your back leg down to touch your calf while reaching the other arm over your head.

Image Source: Tumblr

Image Source: Tumblr

The Reclining Twist

When you’re blessed up top, it can be hard not to give the girls the occasional side-eye when they make your back hurt. Learn to love them again by giving your back some much-needed relief with this reclining twist.

Exhale as you twist to one side, then inhale as you move to the other. Match your breathing with your movement and go slowly (or even rest on one side for a few breaths if it feels good) in the beginning. Then speed up once your back is relaxed and warm.

You will give your back the relief it needs. And the twist is great for strengthening your core, which will pull in your waist.

Image Source: Tumblr

Image Source: Tumblr

Dancer Pose

When you need to remind yourself of just what your body can do, it’s time for dancer pose. This balancing pose engages all of your muscles for a full-body tone. And it will make you thank your powerful thighs once you master it.

If you have trouble balancing, start by mastering the first part of the pose. When you can stand still for several seconds with one foot in your hand and the other in the air, you’re ready to extend forward.

When you’re ready to advance, remember to inhale as you bring your foot up and your arm forward. Make sure you’re balanced, then exhale as you extend your arm and your leg. Switch sides after you put your foot down for a balanced workout.

Child’s Pose

When your workout leaves you feeling like you’ve done too much, relax with child’s pose. This stretch gets the circulation going to relieve sore spots. It also improves your posture and helps with anxiety.

Start this pose on your hands and knees (make sure your knees are separated a little), then push your hips back until your behind is close to your toes.

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