Spring invites renewal, and after a long winter of hibernating and accumulating toxins, it’s time to take some deep gulps of fresh air, and let go of emotional, physical and energetic heaviness. Yoga is the perfect antidote to winter’s lethargy, and it’s one of the best ways we know to detoxify body, mind and spirit.
Here are a few of our favorite detoxasanas to help you wring out the old and breathe in the new:
Winter’s cooler temps cause our muscles to contract, especially around our shoulders and upper back, as we instinctively hunch forward to protect our hearts and contain body heat. Cobra Pose helps to open the heart center, lengthen abdominal muscles and extend the spine. This sensual movement especially stimulates the adrenal glands helping to cultivate more energy, and also helps with digestion and elimination. Cobra also targets the kidneys, which act as filters for the circulatory system, cleaning and purifying the blood.
The arm bind of this pose helps improve the body in three ways: The clasping of the wrist around the bent knee allows both the shoulders and spine to stretch as the liver and kidneys are stimulated, and digestion is improved. The forward bend aspect also adds an introspective, reflective quality to the pose, helping to calm over stimulated minds.
The super stretch offered by this brilliant backbend helps to lengthen the side body and detoxify the liver, as well as create some serious space in the heart. It also helps to open cranky hip flexors, freeing up any lingering negative emotions you may have been harboring since hanging with the fam over the holidays, leaving you open to all kinds of possibility.