Hamstrings in half an hour

When I’m visiting my Mum she likes us to do some yoga together at home as she doesn’t get to any classes. So I asked her what she fancied and she said “something challenging”. Knowing that she has tight hamstrings (a former runner and current Munro-bagger and recreational cyclist) I planned a quick 30 mins class focusing on hamstrings, with a few chest openers and twists thrown in as we both like twists. Here’s pretty much what we did, in case it sounds good for you too. (H = hamstring focus) (yes, we did a lot in 30 minutes. We didn’t hold each static posture for long, around 2-5 breaths. You could hold for longer if you wanted.

  • Cat-cow spine mobiliser
  • Sunbird chakrasana sequence (from Mukunda Stiles)
  • Half virasana, folding forwards; heron; heron twist; on right then left side (H)
  • Paschimottanasana (H)
  • Purvottanasana (H)
  • Pigeon; ardha matsyndrasana; on right then left side
  • Downward facing dog
  • Tadasana
  • Parsvottanasana (H)
  • Hug – a – tree (back stretch and chest opener) (I’ll explain this in a future post)
  • ‘Runners’ lunge’ with cat-cow spine (from Helen Barker) (I’ll explain this in a future post); low lunge with reverse crescent moon; high lunge with reverse crescent moon; do all on right side then swap legs and repeat on t’other (H)
  • Baddhakonasana
  • Marichyasana A (H)
  • Semi-supine gluet stretch (right then left)
  • Utthita hasta padangustasana (H)
  • Bridge, two variations
  • Supine twist
  • Sivasana

If you’re unsure of some of these poses you can check them on the YogaJournal website.

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