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5 Calming Yoga Stretches for Better Sleep

Just before bedtime, feel the stress melt away by trying these 5 calming poses from our sister magazine Fitness. Kay Clivio, an instructor at Pure Yoga in New York City, says sweet dreams will follow. Grab a pillow to get started on these soothing stretches.

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    • Sleeping Swan

      This relaxing yoga pose targets neck, shoulders, back, hips, and legs.

      Sit on floor with pillow in front of you. Bend left knee, bringing sole of left foot to right inner thigh. Lift butt and extend right leg behind you.

      Staying centered, gently hinge forward from hips, placing head on pillow. Extend arms forward, elbows slightly bent.

      Hold for 8 to 10 breaths. Roll back up. Switch legs; repeat.

      Tip: With each pose, breathe in and out through your nose to soothe the central nervous system.

    • Happy Baby

      This relaxing yoga pose targets back, hips, and hamstrings.

      Lie faceup. Bend knees into chest and grab inside edges of feet with hands, palms out.

      Bring knees out to sides, then lower toward armpits, keeping heels above knees, feet flexed.

      Hold for 8 to 10 breaths, gently rocking from side to side.

    • Bridge

      This relaxing yoga pose targets hips and legs.

      Lie faceup with knees bent, feet flat on floor, arms extended by sides, palms up.

      Keeping shoulders down, engage abs and press into heels to lift hips and back to form a diagonal line from shoulders to knees.

      Hold for 8 to 10 breaths; lower.

    • Seated Side Bend

      This relaxing yoga pose targets neck, shoulders, back, and obliques.

      Sit on pillow in a cross-legged position. Place left hand on floor to side of hip, left elbow slightly bent. Extend right arm by ear.

      Lean to left, keeping butt on floor, shoulders down.

      Hold for 8 to 10 breaths. Switch sides; repeat.

    • Rag Doll

      This relaxing yoga pose targets neck, shoulders, back, and obliques.

      Stand with feet hip-width apart, knees slightly bent. Place right hand on left elbow, left hand on right elbow.

      Bend over from hips, letting arms and head hang down.

      Hold for 8 to 10 breaths. Gently roll back up.

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      Next Slideshow 10 Minute Workout to Toned Abs, Legs and Arms

      10 Minute Workout to Toned Abs, Legs and Arms

      These multitasking moves from our sister magazine Fitness will tone your abs, legs, and upper arms. Jonathan Ross, owner of Aion Fitness in Bowie, Maryland, shows you five quick exercises perfect for busy schedules. Grab a pair of 5- to 10-pound dumbbells and a mat, and get ready to trim, tighten and tone.
      Begin Slideshow »

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