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Yoga for Shoulder Openers

Yoga can be a great way to relieve tension and open up the shoulders. Here are some yoga poses that can help with shoulder openers:

  1. Downward-Facing Dog: This pose stretches the shoulders, hamstrings, calves, and hands. Start in a tabletop position with your hands and knees on the floor, then lift your hips up and back to come into downward-facing dog. Make sure your hands are shoulder-width apart and your feet are hip-width apart. Press your hands into the floor and lengthen your spine.

  2. Puppy Pose: This pose stretches the shoulders, spine, and chest. Start in a tabletop position and then walk your hands forward while lowering your chest towards the floor. Keep your hips directly above your knees and your arms shoulder-width apart. Allow your forehead to rest on the floor or a prop.

  3. Thread the Needle: This pose stretches the shoulders, upper back, and neck. Start in tabletop position and then bring your right hand to the center of your mat and slide it underneath your left arm, placing your right shoulder on the floor. Keep your left arm extended and gaze towards your left hand. Repeat on the other side.

  4. Cow Face Pose: This pose stretches the shoulders, hips, and thighs. Start in a seated position and then cross your right leg over your left, bringing your right foot towards your left hip. Reach your right hand up towards the ceiling and then bend your elbow, bringing your hand behind your head. Reach your left hand behind your back and try to clasp your hands together. Repeat on the other side.

  5. Eagle Arms: This pose stretches the upper back, shoulders, and arms. Start in a seated or standing position and then bring your arms out to the sides at shoulder height. Cross your right arm over your left and then bring your palms together. Lift your elbows up and try to bring your forearms perpendicular to the floor. Hold for a few breaths and then repeat on the other side.

Remember to listen to your body and only go as far as feels comfortable for you. You can also use props such as blocks or straps to help support your practice.