How to Squeeze in a Yoga Practice in 5 Minutes
It is hard to believe that my baby girl is two years old! Watching her grow has reminded me of how flexible time seems from our perspective here on this floating blue-green ball: the days fly by or drag on depending on how engaged I am with this moment NOW.
In that spirit, I have found myself sneaking “now” moments on my mat wherever I find a spare minute. When I wake up early and catch a half an hour of asana while the house still sleeps, lucky me! More often, though, it’s 10 minutes during nap time after I’ve caught up on the laundry and before my daughter wakes up; five minutes while she’s contentedly playing by herself after breakfast; two minutes here and there when my sticky mat grabs me and says, “For goodness sakes, Mama, S–T–R–E–T–C–H!
Snag a Stretch
I imagine your experience might be similar. Maybe you have five minutes at your desk after lunch, or when you get home before it’s time to start dinner. These are optimal asana opportunities when we accept them! It is possible to have a rounded practice, even when we only have a small amount of time.
Sun salutations are a great place to start. Here is a different example of a possible sequence. Let your full breath in and out guide you through the postures so they flow together. The more time you have available, the longer you may spend breathing into each posture. When you only have a few minutes, choose a posture from each category for a more balanced practice. And when you have a minute or less, pick one posture that speaks to you, and BREATHE!
- Sukhasana (Easy Pose): Choose a mantra, mudra, or pranayama exercise to practice while you sit, and do a round or two.
- Marjaryasana/Bitilasana (Cat/Cow)
- Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward-Facing Dog)
- Tadasana (Mountain Pose)
- Urdhva Hastasana (Upward Salute)
- Uttanasana (Standing Forward Bend)
- Virabhadrasana II (Warrior II): Right side
- Trikonasana (Triangle Pose): Right side
- Utthita Parsvakonasana (Extended Side Angle Pose): Right side
- Prasarita Padottanasana (Wide-Legged Forward Bend)
- Virabhadrasana II (Warrior II): Left side
- Trikonasana (Triangle Pose): Left side
- Utthita Parsvakonasana (Extended Side Angle Pose): Left side
- Vrksasana (Tree Pose)
Hip Opening & Twisting
- Agnistambhasana (Firelog Pose): Right side
- Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half Lord of the Fishes): Right side
- Agnistambhasana (Firelog Pose): Left side
- Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half Lord of the Fishes): Left side
Back & Forward Bending
- Setu Bandha Sarvanghasana (Bridge Pose)
- Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend)
- Viparita Karani (Legs-Up-the-Wall Pose)
- Ananda Balasana (Happy Baby Pose)
- Savasana (Corpse Pose)
And on those days when only one free moment seems to present itself, I get my hands on the ground for a downward-facing dog. When I seize that moment to connect with my breath, my body, and the Earth, time seems to expand and offer me more and more moments like that one. In other words – magic happens.
Allyse Sonnega is a dedicated yogini, educator, mother, vegan, and overall uplifting human being that provides great service to the world through her peaceful thoughts, words, and actions.