Strike a pose for a supple pain-free body

You hold more tension in your upper body than you probably realize, especially in your neck, shoulders and back. Just think about how much time you sit hunched over (most of are guilty of poor posture) your desk… looking down at your laptop or tablet — maybe even a book. And all that sitting leads to tight hips too. And tightness leads to pain.

Yoga poses are a great way to open up your tense body to increase suppleness and find relief from tightness and pain.  Yoga wellness coach Kaamini Patel will show you how to release that tension, feel better and improve your posture too using an easy upper body harness technique and three yoga warrior poses that will leave you ready to tackle anything.

Strapping up

Using a simple strap or cord can really open up the shoulders and upper back and really get that tension out. Straps come in various sizes, but you’ll need one about 10 feet long for this exercise.

Place the middle of the strap behind your shoulder blades, holding the strap in front of you. Pull the strap back and forth from side to side to massage your back from under the arm pits down to the waist, then back up. This will help heat up the area and get some blood flowing.

Now stand erect with the strap around your back, holding the ends in front of you with your arms bent at your elbow. Make sure the ends are at the same length. Throw both sections of the strap up across your shoulders.

Reach behind and grab both sides and pull the harness snug, crossing the straps at the back. Then pull the end to the front, wrapping around your midsection and tie into a knot.

You should feel the posture correcting, the shoulders opening and a nice stretch in the upper body. You’re now ready to begin the 3 warrior Yoga poses.

Yoga Warrior Pose 1

Stand at the top of your yoga mat (or any defined space) with feet together.

While breathing in, left the left leg and step it behind you to form a nice elongated stance. Keep your hips forward.

Breathe out as you bend your front knee to a 90-degree angle to open the hips.

Breathe in as you raise your arms straight up above you.

In this posture you will feel a nice stretch, opening up the hips and shoulders and back.

Yoga Warrior Pose 2

Slowly move into Warrior 2 pose by turning your rear foot outward, lowering your arms to their sides until they become parallel with the floor.

Touch your middle finger with the thumb to form a mudra (hand sign), as you breathe in and point your lead arm up, gazing at its hand. Your rear hand is held down along the back of the rear leg.

Yoga Warrior Pose 3

Slowly come back to the pervious starting position then straighten the lead knee. Breathe in as the lead arm pushes forward then breathe our as the hand lowers toward the floor. The rear arm is extended behind you.

Shift your gaze down to your toes and then upward at your rear hand reaching up above you.

Return and repeat

Slowly come back up to center, then back to Warrior 2 and then Warrior 1 positions and repeat the sequence.

You will then repeat this exercise on the opposite side. Please follow along with the video for more clear direction.

Dr. Mark Wiley

By Dr. Mark Wiley

Dr. Mark Wiley is an internationally renowned mind-body health practitioner, author, motivational speaker and teacher. He holds doctorates in both Oriental and alternative medicine, has done research in eight countries and has developed a model of health and wellness grounded in a self-directed, self-cure approach. Dr. Wiley has written 14 books and more than 500 articles. He serves on the Health Advisory Boards of several wellness centers and associations while focusing his attention on helping people achieve healthy and balanced lives through his work with Easy Health Options® and his company, Tambuli Media.