Creating and maintaining a feeling of energy requires a dedication to regular yoga training (and having an awesome yoga mat like a Tada Rug to encourage you). These 5 yoga poses emphasize using the entire body while also benefiting from cardio and strength, key things that are often missing from a yoga practice. These poses don’t require any yoga equipment, so find a little bit of room and let's get energized!
This pose will strengthen your entire body, with special attention to toning your belly, chest, arms and back. It also strengthens the wrists and improves posture. Practicing this pose for several minutes will tone the nervous system as well as build strength, stamina and endurance.
Level 1: Begin on your hands and knees, with your hands under your shoulders. Place your knees slightly behind your hips, creating a straight diagonal line from the crown of your head to your knees on the floor. Pad your knees with a blanket, yoga mat, or thin pillow if you feel any discomfort. Hold for 30-60 seconds. Repeat for a total of 3 times.
Level 2: Begin in the top-of-a-push-up position, with your hands under your shoulders and your toes under your heels. Make sure your spine is straight and your body is in a line (don’t stick your hips up!). Engage your belly and without moving your hands, pull them toward your feet for greater core engagement. Press into the floor and press up in the area between your shoulder blades. Hold for 30-60 seconds. Repeat for a total of 3 times.
Level 3: Repeat level 1 or 2 and simply add in 1-5 push-ups during each set or add in a gentle side to side rocking motion while holding plank.
This is an explosive movement that will challenge your body drastically. Just like the name suggests, this pose is about jumping like a happy frog. This pose can be done anywhere and really maximizes the calorie burn while elevating your heart rate quickly. You will strengthen your legs from toes to hips, burn fat, and tone your core. I suggest doing this pose for 20-30 seconds, taking a 5 second break, then repeating for 3-5 more sets. Try to go at least for a whole minute!
Level 1: Begin in a squat position, like a frog. Have your hands on the ground, lift your heels and make sure your knees are turned out to the side. Take a deep breath in. On your exhale, push into the ground with your hands and feet and leap straight up into the air. Reach your arms overhead as you jump and stretch through your legs making them straight. Land onto the ground in your squat position. It’s just like a big frog jump! You can perform this movement by jumping straight up or propel yourself slightly forward while you jump to travel. To make this pose slightly easier, keep your hands behind your head while you jump.
Level 2: Repeat level 1, but bring your knees into your chest when you jump up, rather than keeping them straight. This will increase the core workout of this pose.
Just like the frog jump, this is one of the most efficient, functional workouts you can do. You’ll build endurance, strengthen your entire body and burn calories while elevating your heart rate and breaking a sweat. Got your mat for hot yoga?
1: Begin in a standing position. Jump straight up to the sky, reaching arms high overhead, and stretching the legs straight and pointing the toes. Land with a slight bend in the knees and bring your arms down to your chest.
2: Press your arms straight out in front of your chest as if you were bench pressing the air, as you squat a few inches lower. In this variation, keep your knees pointing forward and your knees over your ankles.
3: Bend at the waist as you squat deeper and touch the ground outside your feet with your hands. Sit low in your hips as if you are sitting on a very tiny chair. Make sure your knees stay pointing forward and don’t go past your ankles!
4: Repeat step 2: Press your arms straight out in front of your chest as if you were bench pressing the air, as you lift your chest and sit up higher.
5: Begin again. This pose can be performed quite quickly. Try doing each part of this pose with the beat of music. Up-center-down-center, and repeat.
This pose will strengthen your back, abs, legs, hip flexors, hamstrings and arms. Finding stability in this pose can also help you align your body, mind, and emotions while improving balance and digestion. It also stimulates the kidneys, thyroid & prostate glands, and intestines. Begin sitting on your sit bones with your chest and lower back lifted and your knees bent into your chest. Lift your toes off the ground and place your hands on the ground behind your hips. Stay here and hold for 30-60 seconds or increase the challenge by lifting your hands off the ground and placing them alongside your legs. If you want more of a challenge, straighten your legs and point your toes to the sky, keeping your knees near your chest. For an even greater challenge, squeeze a yoga block between your inner thighs.
This pose is great for toning the legs and opening the hips. Moving in unconventional ways, like a frog or gorilla, really forces the body to use muscles we didn’t know existed and provides longer-term mobility. This will give your entire body a workout while having fun! Begin in a squat position, like the frog jumps previously mentioned. Reach your hands as far in front of you as you can. Lean onto your hands then jump your feet to, or as close to, your hands as you can. Repeat. Imagine how a gorilla might run. Do your best to keep your hips low to the ground and reach as far forward as you can. Go for speed!
Phoebe Jenkins is a contributing author for Tada Rugs. Tada Rugs is a 5x7 yoga mat disguised as an artistic area rug that you never have to put away. Tada is short for tadasana, or mountain pose, and our own backyard in the San Juan Mountains of Durango, Colorado is where we find our inspiration. Check out our new designs, enter for a chance to win a new Tada Rug, and be sure to follow us for deals and insider specials! Like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram, or contact us through our website! Tie a room together and bring your practice home.
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