mbg moves: An 11-Minute Hip- & Heart-Opening Yoga Flow

Certified Yoga Instructor & Health Coach By Juanina Kocher
Certified Yoga Instructor & Health Coach
Juanina Kocher is a certified yoga teacher, health coach, and creator of Flex + Flow Wellness.
mbg moves: Hip & Heart-Opening Yoga Flow
Welcome to mbg moves! We've been working out at home more than ever lately—and we know our readers are, too. To help keep your fitness routine feeling fresh, we're releasing a new at-home workout every Monday, to start your week off strong. Each month will feature routines from a different incredible trainer we adore. Now, let's get moving with our spotlight trainer: Juanina Kocher.

If you spend all day sitting in front of a computer, there are two types of movement your body is surely craving: heart-opening and hip-opening exercises.

Heart-opening moves offer much-needed stretching and strengthening in your back, shoulders, and chest—while hip-opening exercises help wring out all that stress and tension in your hips.

To help you check both boxes, I've created a beautiful 11-minute hip- and heart-opening yoga flow that doubles down on relief. I recommend doing this flow at least once a day or even several times throughout your day, as needed. The great thing about these moves is you can do them as a full flow or individually for some feel-good body-opening.

Summary

Time: 11 minutes
Equipment: Yoga mat
Instructions: Move from one exercise to the next, following the flow cues as noted.

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Child's Pose

Child's Pose yoga

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  1. Come to a kneeling position on your mat, opening up your knees into a "V" shape.
  2. Slowly let your torso fold over your legs while stretching the arms out in front of you.
  3. Allow your forehead to rest on the mat, massaging your third eye, if you'd like.
  4. Hold for a few breaths, then continue to cat-cow.

Cat-Cow

cat-cow yoga pose

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  1. Come to all fours. Ground down through your palms.
  2. As you exhale, drop your belly, and bring your gaze up to the sky.
  3. As you inhale, curl and round your spine, and bring your gaze toward your belly button.
  4. Repeat for a couple of breaths, then continue to downward dog.

Downward Dog

downward dog yoga pose

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  1. Start in a tabletop position on your mat.
  2. Inhale as you lift your hips up high, coming into a downward-dog position.
  3. Ground down through the soles of your feet and your hands, allowing your hips to be the highest point. You can also pedal out your dog here, lifting one heel, then the other.
  4. Hold for a couple of breaths, then continue to three-legged dog.

Three-Legged Dog

three-legged dog yoga pose

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  1. From a downward-dog position, inhale as you lift your right leg up to the sky.
  2. Hold for a breath, feeling the stretch in your hips.
  3. From here, bring your knee to your nose, then drop it in between your hands and continue to low lunge.

Low Lunge

low lunge yoga pose

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  1. Begin with one foot in between your hands and your left leg extended backward. Bring your left knee onto the mat.
  2. Slowly lift hands up high over your head, coming into a low lunge. Make sure your knee stays over your ankle.
  3. As you inhale, stretch upward, then sink a little lower into those hips on the exhale. You should feel a stretch in your hips.
  4. Hold for a few breaths, then repeat downward dog, three-legged dog, and low lunge on the opposite side. Then, move into plank pose.

Plank

plank pose

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  1. From downward dog, roll your body forward so shoulders are stacked over wrists.
  2. Engage your core, and hold for a couple of breaths.
  3. Move through chaturanga or knees-chest-chin, then continue to cobra.

Baby Cobra

baby cobra yoga pose

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  1. Come all the way down on your mat, lying on your stomach.
  2. Bring your hands underneath your shoulders. Pull your elbows in toward your body.
  3. Keeping your elbows bent, lift your chest up. Come up as high as you'd like–baby cobra or full cobra–yogi's choice.
  4. Hold for a couple of breaths, then slowly lower back to the mat. Continue to upward-facing dog.

Upward-Facing Dog

upward facing dog yoga pose

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  1. Start by lying flat on your mat.
  2. With your hands under your shoulders, press through your palms and rise up.
  3. The only parts of your body touching the mat are your hands and tops of the feet.
  4. Hold for a couple of breaths, then slowly lower back down. Move into bow pose.

Bow Pose

bow pose yoga

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  1. Start by lying flat on your stomach.
  2. Bring the soles of your feet to face the ceiling. Reach around to grab your ankles.
  3. Take a deep breath. On the exhale, start to stretch your legs toward the ceiling, opening up the chest.
  4. With every inhale and exhale, stretch a little further up.
  5. Hold for five to eight breaths. Slowly release, bringing your thighs back to the mat. Move into a downward dog, then pigeon pose.

Pigeon Pose

pigeon yoga pose

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  1. From downward dog, reach your right foot up to the sky.
  2. Bend your knee and bring it in line with your right arm. Bring your right foot to the left side, and allow your shin to rest on the ground.
  3. Bring your back leg down to the mat, and lift your chest.
  4. Hold for a breath, then slowly lower your torso to the ground so it folds over your right leg.
  5. Stay on your forearms, or come all the way down. Continue to breathe for and hold this pose for eight breaths, or as long as you'd like. 
  6. Move through downward dog, three-legged dog, and pigeon on the opposite side. Then, continue to bridge pose.

Bridge Pose

bridge pose

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  1. Slowly roll down onto your mat, lying on your back. Bend your knees, and place your feet and palms on the mat.
  2. Lift your hips as high as you can while stabilizing through your legs, glutes, and core.
  3. Hold for 8 to 10 breaths. Then slowly lower your hips back down to the mat. Close your practice in savasana.

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