Relaxation Poses For Yoga

Head in hands.

Take up a head in hands position with the palms of your hands over your eyes. Pendulum breathe this way for two minutes, then gently give yourself a fingertip friction over the eyebrows with one or two fingers. The pressure should just be enough to move the skin. Continue for two minutes, then return to head in hands for a further two minutes of pendulum breathing.

3. Nape of neck.

Place the fingers of both hands on either side of the back of your neck, close to where the neck joins the head.

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Give deep pressure strokes slowly from the centre outwards as you pendulum breathe. Concentrate on any especially tense areas. Continue for two minutes.

4. Eye rolling.

A curious but very useful strain-relieving exercise when combined with pendulum breathing. The whole exercise takes about two minutes.

A. Start by ‘looking' around the edge of your field of vision in a clockwise direction. Make this a slow exploration, one complete circle for each in and out breath. After five such circles start your eyes travelling anti-clockwise for another five circles.

B. Then close your eyes and stroke across your closed eyes with your fingertips 10 times while pendulum breathing.

5. Dive you are about to dive into a swimming pool. Sit comfortably, push your arms in front of you as far as they will go.

B. Then push your arms back behind you as far as they will comfortably go. Maintain this position while you pendulum breathe five times (you will experience some curious proprioceptive shiver-ings in your arms as your body wonders what is expected of it).

C. Now let your arms ‘gravity fall' and dangle, allowing your chest to fall forward to your knees. Maintain this position for five pendulum breaths, savouring the relaxed feelings.

D. Repeat for two minutes.

Stand up to do the last two exercises over the page.

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