1. Stand, stretch and breathe
The idea in this first exercise is to try to feel taller and to learn rhythmic breathing.
a. Stand naturally, perhaps in front of a long mirror, with legs together and arms by your sides; ideally feet should be bare so that the toes can grip the floor.
b. Breathe in and out through the nose, counting one-and-two-and-three as you breathe in, and actively attempting to increase your height by at least an inch (2.5 cm).
c. Pause – and exhale (breathe out). Let your Yoga Plow Pose go back to normal at the end of a one-and-two-and-three – pause – exhalation.
To start with, on the first two or three inhalations, the period ‘and three’ will feel forced and you will feel that no more air is going into the lungs. Gradually you will adapt to ‘three’ so that the one-and-two-and-three count will become much more equal and effective. As you breathe in you will flatten your stomach, and your shoulders will rise with your chest. Concentrate on elongating your spine as you breathe in.
Repeat five times.
a Stand naturally.
b Breathe in: one-and-two-and-three – pause. Concen-
2. Leg balance and breathe
a. Take up the same posture and again ‘get tall’ while breathing rhythmically.
b. This time, on the first one-and-two-and-three -pause, lift the left leg off the floor and bring the left thigh to right angles to the body. To start with, some instability will be experienced and the right toes will be actively gripping the floor.