With any new venture, the hardest part is starting. This principle even affects the simplest, most common venture we face: a new day. Morning movement, getting up and starting the day, is arguably one of the hardest parts of our daily routine. No matter the challenges that lie ahead.
It’s easy to roll over and hit the snooze. Or worse, pick up your phone and start the mindless scroll. This habit can eat up an hour of your morning in the blink of an eye. However, those activities just leave you wanting to stay in bed longer. Not making the most of the bright day ahead!
Instead, starting the morning off with movement will leave you in a more mindful headspace. You’ll feel ready to tackle the day. To help you get started here’s a quick and gentle morning movement sequence. Start your day on a positive note.
Morning Movement Routine: Ground Yourself
Sit on a yoga mat or on the floor and take a moment to connect with your breath and body. Sit with your legs crossed or in your version of a comfortable seated position. Place one hand on your heart and the other on your stomach. Take a few deep breaths. Stay in this position until you’ve cleared the cobwebs of sleep from your mind and are ready to flow.
Time: ~1-3 minutes
Morning Movement: Side Stretches
From this comfortable seat, put one hand on the earth and bring the other up and over your head. Do this stretch on both sides and lean in to really get your sides stretched out. Synchronize this movement to your breath: inhaling to come back up to center and exhaling to dive into the stretch on one side. Option to put your elbow on the earth as well for a deeper side stretch.
Time: ~30 seconds-1 minute
Time to move to your hands and knees. In a tabletop position, drop your belly and look up for cow pose. Round your back up and drop your neck for cat post. Synchronize your movement to your breath and feel free to have a bit of fun here! Move side to side to increase your range of movement and maybe take a more circular motion with your cat cows.
Time: ~1-2 minutes
Down Dog to Up Dog
Now that you’re more warm, it’s time to transition into your down dog. Take a moment in this position to “walk your dog” (peddle your feet) to help warm up your hamstrings and get all your clicks and ticks out. Then, when you’re comfortable, slowly transition to your up dog. Take another moment to look over each shoulder and work your kinks out here. Once you’re comfortable, transition 2-3 times, following your breath, between down and up dog for a more full range of motion.
Time: ~1-2 minutes
Knocking on Heaven’s Door
You’re almost primed and ready to start your day! However, no energizing flow would be complete without knocking on heaven’s door. Stand up with a slight bend in your knee, twist your body, and let your arms swing slightly (letting them hit your body where they fall). As you become more comfortable, increase your tempo and let your arms swing at whatever level comes naturally. After a minute, slowly decrease the tempo until you come to a stand still.
Time: ~1.5-2 minutes
Optional [but encouraged!]: Put on Your Favorite Uplifting Song and Dance it Out!
If you’re fully energized and ready for your day, I highly recommend taking this option! Dancing to your favorite song will get your energy flowing faster than this routine (like the shot of movement espresso you never knew you needed in the morning)! Drink up and start your day buzzing on life!
This is only the beginning! If you have the time, feel free to repeat this sequence, sit in any of the movements for longer periods of time, or even add a workout to keep your body moving.
Be sure to save this post for reference until you’ve fully incorporated your movement into your daily routine!