Try these 3 restorative yoga poses to melt away stress.
Judith Hanson Lasater
1 of 3 | Supported Bridge Pose
Props: 2 firm king-sized bed pillows; 1 soft washcloth
1. Stack the pillows on a rug in an open space. Sit on the pillows and lie back so your shoulders lightly touch the rug and your heels touch the pillows; you may need to adjust the height of your support to feel comfortable in this position. Let your knees drop inward so they rest gently against each other. Rest your arms out to your sides on the rug, palms up. Avoid dropping your chin toward your throat; keep it slightly lifted so the neck doesn't press into the rug.
2. Cover your eyes with a folded washcloth and breathe naturally [shown]. Focus on the sensations of the mild stretch and of your rib cage expanding and retracting as you breathe. Keep your focus inward. Stay in the pose for 5 to 15 minutes.
3. Come out of the pose by rolling to one side. After resting here for a few minutes, press yourself up with your opposite hand into a comfortable seated position. Pause before setting up the next pose, and take note of how you feel.
BENEFITS: Opens the heart center; quiets the mind.
CAUTIONS: Do not practice this pose if you are more than three months pregnant or have been diagnosed with disc disease in your lower back.