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10-MIN YOGA  SESSION  BASED AROUND PLANK POSE    (6)

Plank Pose Session 6
FIRST EXERCISE OF SESSION (2 minutes)
Sit in easy pose (comfortable cross-legged position) with folded towels under your hips if that aids having your spine long and tall. Bring your hands in front of your chest in prayer position. Exhaling, move your hands upwards and sightly backwards, so your hands end up overhead, arms essentially straight. Inhaling, draw your hands down to being in front of your chest. Exhaling, draw your hands down as far as you can while still keeping the heels of hands together. Then continue (allowing the heels of the hands to move apart) until you are only just able to keep the heels of your fingers together. Inhaling, draw hands up to just in front of your breast bone. Repeat 2 to 4 more times.
SECOND EXERCISE OF SESSION (2 minutes)
Lie on your front with forehead resting on the floor. Have your legs about hip-width apart and curl toes under. Place hands on either side of your chest (about shoulder-width or less apart) with fingers pointing forwards (away from feet) and spread wide, middle fingers parallel with each other. The elbows should be off the floor and as close together as your hands. Leaving your knees on the floor as you exhale, tone the abdomen and press through the hands so your arms straighten. Ideally, your upper legs and trunk are now in a straight line. Hold the position while inhaling. Exhaling, imagine strings attached to your heels and that someone pulls on these strings in the direction away from your head so your legs straighten. Inhaling, slowly lower knees back to the floor, maintaining the tone in the abdomen. Repeat 3 to 8 times. Then lower body down to the floor. Note: The best hand position is very personal and depends on ratio of trunk to limb length and flexibility in the wrists. Some need their hands almost under their shoulders, whilst others can practise with hands almost at their waist. Most people need to step their hands at least one hand length forwards but some will find that they can do this practice without stepping their hands forwards at all.
THIRD EXERCISE OF SESSION (2 minutes)
Lie in semi-supine that is on your back with legs in the crooked position. Place hands on the tops of your shoulders with elbows on the floor close to the side of your trunk. Inhaling, straighten one leg along the floor. At the same time, straighten the arm of the same side over head along the floor and imagine the hand grasping a rope that is lying along the floor. At the very end, have a feeling of a long stretch between heel and wrist. Exhaling, draw elbow back to your side with a feeling of pulling an imaginary rope. And, at the same time, draw the heel towards the hip, returning the leg to beside the other leg. Repeat to the other side. Repeat 2 to 4 more times to each side.
FOURTH EXERCISE OF SESSION (4 minutes)
Either lie down in a comfortable position and practise a relaxation method of your choice, or sit for some breathing or meditation. You could lie down to try the following as a relaxation or breathing exercise. Imagine a circle and choose a colour that you like. Start by imagining the circle filled with the colour and the space/area around the circle empty of colour. Exhaling, imagine the colour flowing out of the circle into the space/area around it. Inhaling, imagine the colour flowing from the space around the circle into the space/area inside the circle.Remember not to rush sitting up and standing after practising relaxation as it causes the blood pressure to fall, which can cause dizziness if one moves too quickly.