On cold winter mornings, you may need a little extra motivation to practice your asanas. So think of it as a great opportunity to tackle some of yoga’s more challenging poses and heat up your body at the same time.
The poses that warm us up the most tend to be the ones that build strength and stamina, especially if we hold them a little longer than usual—maybe for an extra breath or two. The Warrior poses are great for developing strong legs. Imaginary Chair strengthens the thighs and ankles as well as your core muscles and Boat strengthens the abs, back, and legs. If you’re not strong enough to hold them for very long, do repetitions instead, giving yourself time to rest in between. Working like this also helps to build strength and stamina.
Because these poses heat up the large muscles of the body, it’s not necessary to do a lot of warmups beforehand, though if your joints feel stiff and cold, it’s probably a good idea to do at least a few. Shoulder Rolls will loosen your shoulders, Biking Pose will warm up your hips and knees and Ankle Rotations will get the kinks out of your feet and ankles.
Once you’ve created some heat in your body with a few of yoga’s strengthening poses, I bet you will be motivated to keep going. By the end of your session, you should be feeling warm and energized for the rest of your day.