How-to: Lie down on your back with arms alongside your body, and bring knees into your chest. With legs either bent or straight, lift your hips and reach your feet toward the floor behind your head. Interlace your fingers with arms straight on the ground, and squeeze your shoulder blades and elbows close together. Bend your elbows and support your middle back with your palms, fingers facing up.
Tips: Take your time with this pose, pausing and breathing deeply as soon as you feel some resistance in your neck and upper back. Knees can remain slightly or deeply bent. When your feet find the ground, use your hands and breath to lift your spine more vertical and open the front of your body longer, bringing your shoulders, chest and hips into a vertical line.
Benefits: Releases the neck and back. Calming. Good for circulation.
Michael Taylor is a yoga guide at Strala Yoga in New York City. (Michael prefers "guide" to "instructor"). He's practiced Eastern movement and healing techniques for more than two decades. He holds a degree in mind-body medicine from Harvard, and studied alternative medicine and psychology at Oxford. Mike is also the CEO of social media company Odyl, climbs a few mountains in his spare time, and is the husband of yoga master Tara Stiles.
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