AlgaeCal’s Yoga for Osteoporosis Class

AlgaeCal’s Yoga for Osteoporosis Class


Hey, everyone! It’s Cat. Welcome to our first
AlgaeCal community yoga class. Based on your feedback,
I’ve put together a 20-minute sequence for you to follow along with.
As we go through the class, please make sure to listen to your body. So if there’s
anything that I demonstrate that causes pain or just doesn’t feel right, just
come out of the pose and you can always write to me below the video.
I’d be happy to suggest a modification for you to try. For one of the poses in this
class, I’m going to be using a yoga strap. Okay, let’s get started in a standing
position. So standing hip-width distance apart.
Good posture starts from the ground up, so we want to build a good foundation
with our feet. So take a look at your feet. Make sure your toes are facing
forward, and have your heels in line with your second toe. And now let’s experiment
a little bit with our balance. So start shifting your weight from one
foot to the other, back and forth. And now try putting your weight into the edges
of your feet. And now try collapsing at the arch and
putting your weight into the front edges of your feet, or the inside edges, and see
what that does to your knees. And now try to balance your weight on all four
corners of the feet. So you saw there that having a strong arch will affect
your knees, and it’ll also affect your alignment throughout your body. So you
really want to strengthen that arch. So let’s do some toe lifts. So as you inhale,
lift all your toes. And exhale – drop your toes back down. And inhale, lift. And exhale,
lower. And now let’s make this a little bit more challenging. So this time, when
you lift your toes, keep your big toe down on the ground. So inhale, lift all
your toes, keeping your big toe down. And then switch, pressing all your toes into
the mat but lifting your big toes. And then switch through again. And now try
looking away from your toes as you do this. And switch. And switch again. One more time. And now rest all your toes back on the
mat. So let’s travel up to our knees now. So if your knees have a tendency to
point inwards, try to rotate them out so that they’re also in line with your
second toe. So you want your heels and your knees in line with your second toe.
And then traveling up the body, use your quad muscles to lift your kneecaps, lift
your pelvic floor, draw your navel in and up. Open across your chest, shoulders
relaxed down, arms by your side, and your head is floating evenly at the top of
your spine. So you can imagine that there’s a string attached to the top of
your head and that’s lifting your head up towards the sky. Let’s move through
some shoulder rolls to open the chest. So inhale, lift your shoulders up towards
your ears. And exhale, rotate them back down.
Inhale, lift. And exhale, down. And inhale, lift.
Exhale, down. Inhale to lift. And exhale, dropping that back down.
Now let’s extend our arms out to the sides. So making a ‘T’ shape. And let’s rotate
the shoulders back and forth. So as you inhale, rotate your hands so that the
tops of your hands are facing forward and your thumbs are facing down.
And then exhale, palms
coming forward, thumbs facing up, and go back and forth between these
rotations. And as you do so, make sure you still have that strong foundation in the
feet, making sure that your kneecaps are still lifted, your navel still in and up,
chest is open. Palms forward. And then palms coming up. And relax your arms back down. And you’ll
notice that I’m instructing you to inhale and exhale. So with the breathing,
you want to try to attach a breath to a movement. Generally when you’re lifting
your bodyweight, you’re inhaling; and generally when you’re sinking down,
you’re exhaling. So let’s try attaching the breath to the movement by lifting
our arms on an inhale. And close your eyes so you can really attach the breath
to the movement, and exhale coming down, And inhale, lifting the arms overhead
just as high as you can. You don’t have to go all the way.
And exhale, bringing your arms down like you’re moving through water really
slowly. Check that you still have good foundation in the feet,
knees are still lifted, pelvic floor is still lifted. And exhale, bringing the arms
down again. Let’s do this one more time. So inhale,
lift the arms up. And exhale, bringing the arms back down, and
you can open your eyes again. So inhale to lift your arms again, and grab a hold
of your left wrist with your right hand and we’re gonna move into a side bend. So
inhale, elongate through your spine, and exhale to bend over to the right side,
And when you’re bending, think about elongating. So you’re pulling up towards
the top corner of the room rather than over to the right side. So you want to
keep length through the right side of the body as well as the left side of the
body. So take a few breaths here, really pressing into that left foot. Feel that
stretch across the left side of the body. And inhaling to lift yourself back up.
And now switch the hands. So take the left hand and grab the right wrist. Take
a big inhale to elongate your spine. And exhale over to the left side, again
elongating – so reaching for the top corner of the room.
And take a few breaths here and really press into the right foot to accentuate
that elongation through the right side of the body. And inhaling to lift yourself back up.
And the arms can come back down. So we’re going to come into a chair pose. So you
can stay where you are. I’m just going to turn to the side to demonstrate. So again
standing hip-width distance apart, arms can either come over your head or, if
they’re kind of tired at this point, you can have your hands in front of your
chest in prayer position. So inhale to elongate the spine again. And exhale – bend
at your knees sitting backwards. So avoid bringing your knees forward to come down.
You want to sit back. And you don’t have to come down too far – just enough to
engage the glutes. Especially if your knees are sensitive – don’t come down too
far, just enough to to feel your glutes engage. And take a few breaths here. And maybe come down a little bit farther. And inhale to lift yourself back up to
standing. So we’re gonna come down to our hands and knees now. But before we do
that, I just want to demonstrate how you want your hands and your arms to be
positioned. So holding your arms out in front of you, palms facing forward,
fingers facing up. You can make this ‘L’ shape with your index finger and your
thumb, so your index fingers are pointing upwards, and just rotate your hands all
the way over to the side and see your arms rotating as well. And notice that
your elbow creases are now facing upwards. So keeping your elbow creases
facing upwards, rotate your forearms and your fingertips back upwards, keeping the
elbow creases facing upwards. Again notice that ‘L’ shape with your index
finger and your thumb. So take a look at that positioning. That’s how you want to
be when you’re in hands-and-knees position. Okay, so we’re going to come down to
the mat, and let’s try to do that with our torso upright. So taking a step
forward and come onto your back toes, come down
into a low lunge, right foot comes back to meet the left.
And now hinge at your hips, and you’re ready to come into hands-and-knees. So find that
positioning that we were looking at earlier – so make that ‘L’ shape with your
index finger and your thumb. So index fingers facing forward, rotate the elbow
creases so they’re facing forward as well. Knees directly under your hips. And
your feet can either be tucked like mine are or you can place them on top of the
mat – whichever is more comfortable for your knees. Just make sure that your
knees are directly under your hips. Okay, so keep the head slightly lifted because your head’s quite heavy, so you want to make sure it’s lifted to protect your neck. So you can imagine
that string again attached to the top of your head, this time pulling your head
towards the front of the room, and your tailbone is lengthening towards the back of the room.
So as you inhale, you’re going to drop the belly, lift the tailbone, look forward,
and exhale coming back into a flat-back neutral spine. And again, inhale, drop the belly, lift the tailbone,
look forward, feel the arch in the thoracic spine, which is the upper spine, and exhale, coming back to neutral. Inhale, lifting, shoulder blades coming together, look forward. Exhale, back to neutral. Inhale one more time. Tailbone up. Look up, look forward. And exhale back to neutral. From here we’re going to come down to
our belly. So walk your knees slightly back, keeping your elbows nice and tucked
in beside you. Drop your torso down to the mat. Now place your elbows
underneath your shoulders, palms on the mat. Your toes can come in towards
each other and your heels can relax outwards, and you can actually just completely relax your lower body. Pressing into your palms, lift your chest, look forward, pressing into
the elbows as well, and now energetically pull with your hands to lift your chest
even more, pressing into the pelvic bone. If this is too much of a backbend for
you, you can always just walk your arms a little bit forward – that’ll make it a little bit more gentle. Taking a few deep breaths here, again
make sure to relax the lower body. Inhaling to lift the chest, shoulder blades
come back together. And exhale. Inhale. And exhale to come all the way down. So
bring your elbows out slightly, turn your face down. Your forehead can come to the
to the mat. Bring your arms out into a ‘T’ position. This time you want to
engage your lower body, so press the tops of your toes onto the mat and kind of
try to grip the mat with the tops of your toes. Engage your leg muscles so
that your knees come off the mat, and as you inhale, lift your head, lift your
chest, lift your hands and lift your feet, pressing into the public bone, and exhale to
come down. And again, inhale. Lift your head, chest and
feet. And exhale to come down. Just keep moving through this. Lifting on an inhale and lowering on an exhale. Inhale to lift. Open through the chest and exhale to lower. And one more time. So inhale, lifting. And let’s hold here, lifting a little bit higher. And relax. Okay, now we’re gonna come on to the back
of our body. So to get there, extend your right hand
overhead, press into your left hand beside you, and push yourself over the
right side of your body to come onto your back. And now just shimmy your way
back onto your mat. Okay, for the next position, you want to have your strap or
your belt handy. So come to lying on your back with your knees bent and your feet
firmly planted on the mat. Your feet are about hip-distance apart, palms are
facing down, shoulders are relaxed and down. Broaden through the chest. Tuck your
chin slightly to elongate through the back of the neck. Grab your strap and
place it around the ball of the right foot. Now push through the right heel, all the
way up towards the sky and walk your hands up the belt so that your arms are
straight but your shoulders are still relaxed down on the mat. You don’t want
to be lifting up. You want to have your shoulders firmly planted on the mat. And
it doesn’t matter if you can’t get your leg fully straightened. You just want to be
aiming towards straight. But if it’s bent, that’s fine, as long as you’re feeling
that elongation through the back of the leg. And this is a really great stretch
if you have osteoporosis because you can stretch the hamstrings without doing any
forward folding. And check that your left foot is still firmly planted on the mat
and your knees not splaying outwards. Push through that top heel,
take an inhale. And exhale. And another inhale, stretching a little bit more, and
exhale to release down. Place your right foot beside your left.
Feel the difference between the left side and the right side of the body. And
now let’s move to the same thing on the left side. So grabbing the strap again,
place it around the ball of the left foot, pressing up through the left heel,
right foot firmly planted on the mat, walk your hands up if you need to, to
straighten your arms, but make sure your shoulders are relaxed and down, chin
slightly tucked, pressing through the left heel, stretching the back of the leg. And breathe. And exhale. Inhaling, stretch a little bit more, press
through the left heel. And inhale and exhale to come down. And you can drop
your belt to the side. You don’t need it anymore. So we’re going to move through
some bridge poses. So again, feet planted on the mat, quite close to your sitz
bones, palms facing down onto the mat. And we’re just going to tilt the pelvic bone
back and forth. So as you inhale, tilt the pelvic bone up towards your navel and back down. And inhale, tuck. And exhale back down. Then inhale to tilt forward.
This time, as you tuck your pelvic bone up towards your belly, lift yourself off
the mat, engaging the glutes, lifting with control, keeping your glutes
engaged. You don’t have to come up to your full range of motion here. Just the
important thing is to keep your glutes engaged and move with control. And then exhale, slowly come down. And just when you touch the mat again, lift
up, glutes engaged, chin tucked. Make sure your knees are still in line with your
hips, so don’t let your knees splay out towards the sides. Slowly coming down. Glutes still engaged, lifting. And exhale, lower down. Inhale, lift. Exhale, lower. Just a few more times. Inhale. Make sure your shoulders are still
relaxed, you’re not hunching them up. Last one. Lifting, really engage your
glutes this time, and lower all the way down. And rest when you get to the bottom.
And now just windshield-wipe your knees from side to side, gently twisting
through your torso. And now slowly walk your feet down towards the
corners of your mat, resting your legs straight onto the mat, feet flopping,
toes outwards, palms turned to face upwards. Bring your
shoulder blades together slightly and relax down onto the mat. And closing your
eyes, take a deep inhale and exhale through your mouth. And again, deep inhale and exhale through your mouth. And now just let your breathing relax. Find
your natural state. And we’re gonna take a few moments here
just to rest. If there’s any part of your body that
you’re still clinging or holding onto, just let it go and trust that the ground
will hold you and support your weight. You can stay in this resting position
for as long as you like. Or you can join me now, wriggling your
fingers and your toes, rotating your ankles, rotating your wrists, bringing your hands
above you, stretching throughout your whole body. Big stretch. Move your head side to side. And
coming to roll onto one side, resting your head and your arm, taking a breath
here and pressing your palm in front of you. Extend one leg out and coming into a seated position. And you can open your eyes, and we’re done. Thank you so much for joining me today.
If you have any feedback, any suggestions, please let me know in the
comments below the video. That way I can tailor the next class to suit you.
Thanks again so much for joining me and see you next time.

2 thoughts on “AlgaeCal’s Yoga for Osteoporosis Class

  1. This is a great idea but I personally can not get down on the floor. I would love to see something similar using chair yoga.

  2. Hello! Do you have any special position/exercises to help with better posture? I am a writer and spend hours upon hours looking at the computer (hopefully finishing my book too) and as a results my posture is sort of S like with my head leaning forward… I know this affects my energy level and strength. Thank you.

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