Yoga for Core strength building routine

  • FireDoor211

    Posts: 1030

    Aug 15, 2012 1:49 PM GMT
    This can be a tough routine for some, but there is no wrong way to do yoga. I feel like each time you try a pose, you should strive to do it just a little bit better. Eventually, you will build the strength necessary to perform the more advanced poses.

    I did this yoga sequence 3 times daily for about a month and developed rock solid core muscles. It takes about 10 minutes to perform the sequence. I wouldn't do all 3 sets in a row, mainly because you should spread the workout out over the course of your day, to keep your muscles strong and engaged. Once in the morning, once mid day, and once before you go to bed.

    I do each pose for 12 breaths. These are long slow deep breaths. If you cannot make it to 12, push for 8 then try to get up to 12 later. Getting to 12 breaths takes me about 26-30 seconds depending on my focus.

    Some of the poses may seem easy, like "is he joking?" easy. If this is your experience you aren't doing the pose quite right. when you first get into the pose focus on finding the point in the pose where all your muscles are most engaged. When you hit that mark you will feel it, you may even start to shake. This is normal, in fact the shaking is ideal because it is causing micro convulsions in your muscles. It's like the equivalent of doing 150 crunches in a matter of seconds for whatever muscle is doing the shaking. Over time, your muscles will strengthen and this will cease and you will have more solid toned muscles.

    So here is my Sequence:

    Mountain Pose: In this pose the purpose is to focus on the breathing that you will be doing through out the entire set of exercises. Focus on long slow deep breaths with this exercise then continue through the rest at the same tempo.

    Stand with your feet together and your arms at your sides. Keep your back straight and your core muscles engaged. Breath in and bring your arms up over your head and raise your head to look at your hands as they meet above you. After a brief pause lower your arms in a sweeping circular motion until they meet in a "prayer" position in the middle of your chest. Repeat this 3 times then on the fourth as your arms are sweeping down bend your body forward while keeping your back straight and your arms at your sides, then drop them down and put your palms flat to the floor (You may not be able to reach the floor, the goal is to bend as far forward as you can while keeping your back and legs straight). Breath in, bring your face forward and pull your shoulders back away from your ears.Exhale, curl your body forward, grabbing your ankles and pulling yourself deeper into this forward bend.

    Plank pose: From Mountain, squat down, put your palms on the floor extend your legs out behind you. Bring your hips down until you can feel your lower abdominals engage. Remember to keep your arms below your shoulders and your shoulders back away from your ears. Hold for 12 Long deep breaths.

    Forearm Plank: While keeping the rest of your body engaged lower your body onto your forearms and hold your arms at a 90 degree angle. Hold for 12 deep breaths.

    Dolphin Pose: While in forearm plank do a pike up, bringing you hips up into the air and your legs in. Focus on keeping your legs straight, your heels on the floor and your back straight. You are only bending at the hips. Hold for 12 breaths.

    Upward Facing Dog: Bring your knees onto the floor put your palms flat on the floor, extend your legs back like in plank pose, bring your hips down toward the floor, your shoulders back and your head up. Your thighs should be fully engaged and off the floor as well as your arms and lower back, your abdominals will be forced out forwards. Hold for 12 breaths.

    Downward Facing Dog: Keeping your hands and feet in the same places, bring your hips up like in a pike, and bring your head down, bring your heels down while keeping your legs, back and arms straight. focus on pushing back from your arms and keeping your heels on the ground. Hold for 12 breaths.

    Warrior I: From downward facing dog Bring your right foot up between your palms, bend your leg at a 90 degree angle, raise up your torso and sweep your arms up over your head. Your left leg should still be straight out behind you, engage your back and focus your strength upwards into your hands. Hold for 12 Breaths. Come back down into Plank pose, for a breath, maybe 2, and repeat with the left side.

    Airplane/Warrior III: With your left leg still in front, straighten your knee, bring your right leg straight back behind you and your arms our to your sides. Bring your chest up and forward with your face. After holding for 6 breaths, bring your arms straight out in front of you, turn your face down and hold for the remaining 6 breaths.

    Tree/Eagle Pose: While remaining on the same left leg, bring your torso up straight and place the bottom of your right foot on the inside of your left thigh. Bring your arms down to your chest in a prayer pose. Hold for 6 breaths then extend your arms above your head, put your palms together and look up at them. Hold for the remaining 6 breaths.

    Repeat Airplane and Tree on right side.

    Crane Pose: Start by standing with your feet shoulder width apart, bring your palms down on the floor between your feet, bring your knees up onto the backs of your elbows and hold for 12 breaths. This one is an arm balance, and they can be tough. So take it easy. If you can only make it 4 breaths. That's fine.

    Leg Lift: From crane come down on your back like your laying on the beach getting a tan. Put your upper body weight on your elbows, and keep your back straight. Raise your feet about 8 inches off the floor, and hold for 12 breaths.

    Reverse Plank: Bring your torso more upright and put your palms on the floor with your arms straight. Bring your hips up keeping your back and legs straight, until you feel your core engage. Hold for 12 breaths.

    Scale: Bring your hips down, your legs up at a 45 degree angle (while keeping them as straight as possible) If you have the strength, pick your arms up off the floor and hold them out straight in front of you. Hold for 12 breaths.

    Table: From scale, bring the bottoms of your feet flat to the floor and your palms flat on the floor behind you. Bring your hips up until you feel your abs and glutes engage. The front of your body should be flat like a table, your arms straight, and your legs at a 90 degree angle. Hold for 12 breaths.

    Bridge: From table bring your body down to the floor and lay on your back, keep your feet planted on the floor. Bring your arms down to your sides and grab your ankles, thrust your pelvis up until you feel your core engage. Hold for 12 breaths.

    Then I finish of with 3 rounds of power yoga. It's simple, you do each pose at your maximum capacity for one breath only. This is my sequence.

    Plank->Forearm Plank->Dolphin->Upward Facing Dog->Downward Facing dog icon_neutral.gif| x3

    So that's it. I hope it's easy to understand. If My descriptions are too foggy you can look up most of these moves online or ask me, I can try to explain better, or take pictures. If This ever comes up again I'm just going to make a video. It would have been so much simpler. Enjoy.
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    Aug 15, 2012 9:38 PM GMT
    Copy/Paste/Save as Word document
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    Aug 17, 2012 3:35 AM GMT
    I just found out that I have a degenerative disc in my lower back. I was told I should do core strength training regularly, and this looks like a good start. Thanks for sharing!!
  • Luke28

    Posts: 25

    Aug 17, 2012 6:24 PM GMT
    Just tried this few nights ago. Very awesome. A video would definitely rock too. icon_smile.gif
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    Aug 19, 2012 7:23 PM GMT
    Tried this today. I did this as my main workout today, with 3 run throughs at 12 breaths and 3 at 1or2 breaths. It was really a great workout. The only thing I didn't manage was Crane. My Balance is pretty weak.

    Once you get into the flow of the exercises it is lots of fun. Thank you, Firedoor
  • FireDoor211

    Posts: 1030

    Aug 19, 2012 7:30 PM GMT
    Sure thing, glad to help out guys. The more you do it, and the more core strength you build the better your balance and strength will become. Crane is tough, try it even if you can only hold it for a few breaths. If you fall, you can either pick up where u left off or just continue. It's up to u. It may seem like its intuitive to rest your knees on the back of your elbows, but the key is to use your abs to keep your legs up. It's tough, but is worth it.

    I will see what I can do about getting a video put together.