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De-stress this time of year

Christmas is a time for reflection, giving and recieving and getting into the festive spirit. Maybe eating a few mince pies and munching through the office chocolate stash but it can also be a very stressful time of year. So we've put together a little yoga flow of restorative yoga poses for you to feel really relaxed and calm.

Head over to Instagram IGTV @yogigemma or YouTube (Easyoga) Click the link

for a 8 minute video of this sequence.

Roll out your mat and find a comfortable, quiet area within your house or anywhere you feel comfortable and relaxed. Put on some comfy clothes.

Grab a blanket and or a pillow for the flow.

Square Breathing sequence.

Start by lying down or sitting up. Get into a comfortable position. If laying down, allow your feet to be mat distance apart and allow your feet to fall out to the sides. Have hands resting where ever is comfortable. Bring your attention into your body. Squate breathing is a sequence of breath where we inhale for 4 counts, hold your breath for 4 counts, exhale for 4 counts and hold again for 4 counts. Repeat this sequence 4 times and then release your breath back to its normal rhythm.

Crocodile Pose

Use a rolled up blanket or bolster and come to lay on your tummy. Place the blanket under your tummy and allow your body to fully relax over it. The pressure from the blanket will help your internal organs to relax. Bring your head to rest on your hands, close your eyes and slowly breath in and out. Stay here for 5 breaths.

Supported Childs Pose hugging blanket and pillow

Come to table top or all fours, having hands under shoulders and knees under hips. Bring your big toes to touch and place your pillow in between your knees and sink your hips down towards your heels. Allow your chest to rest on your blanket hugging your arms around it. Stay here for 5 breaths or for 5 minutes. This pose is great for a lower back stretch, releases calmness, brings attention back into your body and allows you to breath in calmness. I absolutely love this pose.

Supported Pigeon Pose

Come to table top again and bring your right knee towards your right wrist, placing your shin onto the floor with your foot towards your left wrist. Push your left leg backwards bringing the left hip towards the right heel. Hug your blanket bringing your chest down towards the floor. Every exhale push your hips closer to your heel, releasing tension in the outer hip. Stay here for 5 breaths and repeat on the other side.

Reclined Spinal Twist

Come onto your back with the rolled up blanket like a sausage. Bring your blanket to rest just under your shoulder blades or your bra line. Keep knees bent with feet on the floor and allow your arms to come over the top of the blanket. Drop your legs down to one side, gazing down the other shoulder. Big deep breaths here. Really allowing everything to release. Stay here for 5 breaths. On your next inhale draw knees up to the centre and swap sides.

Savasana (Corpse Pose)

Allow yourself to get fully comfortable in a laying down position. Allow your feet to fall out to the sides and your shoulders pushed away from you. Either rest your head on your blanket or pillow and use your blanket as a cover. Allow your body to feel completely at ease, easy breath with no restrictions. Stay here for 5 minutes or longer. Allowing thoughts to pass and drift off. Slowly come out by rolling to your right side and pushing up to a comfortable seated position.

Come back to any of these poses when you are feeling overwhelmed during the holiday season. Maybe even on Christmas day, take yourself off for 5 minutes away from all the hustle and bustle of the big day, collect your thoughts and reflect on your space and your time. Family may not even notice you've gone. Take in your breaths and release, softening through your forehead, unclenching your jaw and bring your tonge away from the roof of your mouth.

Above all enjoy the festivities and remember who you are.

I have some hand made Lavender Eye Masks for sale over on the Easyoga website or email me at gemmanice82@gmail.com and I'll send you some photos of them. They are a great way to relax. I use them in my classes for Savasana and everyone loves them. They are priced at £10 each with free delivery. Or sign up to the newsletter for your chance to win an eye mask.

Happy holidays everyone.



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