Practicing yoga is great for your body, no matter what time of day you choose to work out. However, starting your day with a quick morning yoga routine will allow you to feel accomplished before getting to work and help you receive a host of other benefits.
In this article, we will:
- Discuss the benefits of having a morning yoga routine
- Examine why certain poses are chosen for morning yoga
- Showcase the best 15 minute morning yoga routine with directions & photos
- Go over tips for staying consistent with routines
5 Benefits of Having a Morning Yoga Routine
While it’s true that doing any exercise in the morning will benefit you, yoga arguably provides the best benefits. Having a morning yoga routine allows you to wake up your body and mind without overdoing it to the point where you become lethargic. Yoga is best done in the morning because of the combination of breathing, mobility work, body awareness, and poses that can counter typical sedentary activities during the day, such as sitting at a desk.
These are the 5 benefits to doing a morning yoga routine.
Kickstart Your Day with More Energy
If you’re someone that constantly struggles with feeling awake during your mornings, adding a yoga routine can help. Specific poses help with opening up your chest and allows you to breathe more deeply. Getting more oxygen into your lungs will help you feel more refreshed mentally and physically.
Improve Your Posture
Yoga is great for improving your posture. In addition to bringing about more body awareness, yoga helps to build your core strength and improve your flexibility. Core strength and flexibility help to make it physically easier to stand and sit up straight. Being more aware of your body in general is great for seeing how you feel throughout your day.
Feel More Confident
Along with an improved posture, you’ll not only portray confidence, you’ll feel more confident. The poses you do in our morning yoga routine work to open your chest, make you stand tall, and take up space. Yoga can also help you build and tone your muscles. When you look and feel good, you’re going to be more confident.
Boost Your Metabolism
Focusing on your breathing is part of yoga. By taking deep breaths as part of your yoga exercise, you’re breathing more oxygen into your body. Improving the amount of oxygen your body gets can speed up your metabolism and lead to you burning fat, ultimately helping you lose weight.
Increase Your Mobility
Mobility is important for reducing your risk of injuries, improving your posture, and giving you more range of motion. It can also improve your athletic performance and make it easier for you to do certain movements.
How To Choose Poses
In yoga, certain poses will affect your body differently. If your goal is to give you more energy naturally, you’ll want to choose poses that focus on balancing, opening up your chest, and putting you into a backbend position. Each of these poses will trigger your body’s instinctive flight or fight response, which will make you more alert both mentally and physically.
A morning yoga routine doesn’t need to be extensive to be effective. While it’s great to strive for a minimum of 30 minutes of yoga everyday, splitting this up into two workouts is completely acceptable. One workout can be your morning yoga routine and focusing on energizing yourself and giving you mental clarity throughout the day. The second yoga workout can be done before bed to encourage more restful sleep. These poses will be rooted more in stretching that will help to relieve soreness and stiffness, ultimately allowing you to relax both your body and mind.
The Best Morning Yoga Routine
Here is the ultimate 15 minute morning yoga routine that will have you feeling awake and confident before you start your day. No equipment is necessary, though you can use a mat and a yoga block. Read through the routine & follow along with the video at the end of this section.
Step your left leg back and put your right knee over your ankle on your right foot. Soften your left knee to allow your hips to open up. You’ll want to make sure that your chest is up. Each exhale, sink deeper into this pose. Be sure that your knee stays over your ankle & doesn’t slide forward – if it does, you’ll want to push your foot a little forward to correct this.
Do this for 5 deep breaths before switching sides.
Standing Side Bend
Stand up nice and tall with your toes touching. Bring your hands overhead, interlace your fingers and point your index fingers. Breathe in deeply and lean up and over to one side. Keep your body tight and your spine neutral. This should provide a deep stretch throughout the side of your body. Go a little deeper with each breath.
Do this for 5 deep breaths on each side.
Standing Back Bend
Reach your arms straight up, reach back, and keep your ribs lifting up and away from your hips. Keep length throughout your body and squeeze your back. Ensure your tailbone is reaching down, your thighs are squeezing towards each other and keep your abs tight. You can interlace your fingers if you’d like.
Take 5 deep breaths in this position.
Wide Legged Forward Bend
Get as wide as you can with your feet flat on the floor. Press into the outer edges of your feet.
Pull your chest forward and arch the spine. Walk your arms out in front of you. Do NOT forward fold all the way. Bend your knees if needed. Stretch should be on your inner thighs & backs of legs.
Take 5 deep breaths in this position.
Bring your feet closer together and lift back up into Warrior 2 pose. Turn your right foot out, bend into your right knee. Push left hip into right hip, toes should be straightforward or slightly in. Tighten your abs and have your arms out lifting a little above the shoulders. Keep your ribs lifted.
Do this for 5 deep breaths before switching the forward foot.
Put your feet shoulder width apart, toes should be slightly out. Sit straight down, squeezing your legs. Be sure to keep your chest up and facing forward. Bring your arms out in front of you.
Hold this pose for 3 deep breaths.
Runner’s Lunge Twist
Place yourself into a runners lunge, with your right foot forward, left foot back. Press your right hip toward the ground. Pull your chest forward and put your left hand just inside your right foot (you can use a block for assistance.) Your spine should be in a straight line. Reach your right arm up into the air, roll back your shoulder, and bring your right hand to your lower back. Roll back your shoulder even more to help open up your spine. Next, reach your arm straight up and hold. Make sure your right hip continues to push down instead of out to the side.
Do this for 3 deep breaths before switching sides.
3 Tips to Make Sure You Do Your Morning Yoga Routine
This morning yoga routine is great for helping you feel more confident and alert for the beginning of your day. That being said, having a plan and executing on that plan are two different things. If you’re not consistent with a routine, you won’t get your desired results. The most important thing you can do is simply set yourself up for success the night before.
Having a night time routine will allow you to take the time you need to get set up instead of feeling rushed when morning comes around. Your night time routine may be easier to stay consistent with as you have as much time as you allow for completing it.
Get More Sleep
Don’t watch Netflix until you pass out from exhaustion. If possible, you’ll want to stay away from screens, and yes, that includes your phone. Instead, try reading a book, or even doing a quick 5 minute night time yoga routine that will help encourage relaxation. Staying away from screens right before bed will help you relax your mind and get you to sleep quicker.
Set Up Everything The Night Before
This means getting your yoga mat out, having your water bottle filled and even sleeping in your yoga clothes if you need to. Do whatever you can to reduce your stress and minimize your excuses to not do a quick workout.
Know Your Workout Ahead of Time
When you know exactly what you’re going to do, it’ll reduce your stress and save you time. You won’t be boggling your brain, trying to google and find something that fits with the time you have remaining before you need to get ready for work. Have a plan for your workout to make your morning go smoother.
Looking for a new morning yoga routine to add some variety? We added three new routines to our YouTube channel, brand-new for 2022.