Supine Poses are poses done lying flat on our back with our face up. This means these positions are versatile, calming and accessible to all. Supine poses are great for every body type and all yogis, from those who have never tried Yoga before to advanced Yoga masters. Supine poses can be practiced by anyone and are also a great option for those who have difficulties standing for long periods of time. If someone is experiencing pain and pressure in the knees, for example, the laying position relieves the force of gravity against the joints and is therefor the perfect option to stay fit! There are various poses (asana) that can be practiced in a supine position that can be included in your Yoga practice or stand on their own as a Yoga session.
Uttanpadasana (Double Leg Raise Pose)
- Lie flat on your back with your ankles together and arms at your side with your palms facing down.
- Inhale as you extend and lengthen your spine. Imagine that a string is pulling the top of your head and your feet in opposite directions.
- Exhale as you lift your legs simultaneously. They can be raised up to a 45 degree angle or a 90 degree angle.
- Breathe and hold this pose for five breaths.
Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclining Bound Angle or Butterfly Pose)
- Begin by lying flat on our back with your arms outward and your palms facing upward.
- Bring the heels of your feet together as close to your pelvic area as you feel comfortable.
- Breathe, relax and let the power of gravity gently lower your knees toward the ground.
Pavanamuktasana (Wind Relieving Pose)
- Again, begin lying face up with your ankles together and inhale.
- With an exhale bend your legs and bring your knees up to your chest.
- Wrap your arms around your knees to carefully coax them to come closer to your chest.
- Bring your forehead onto or near to your knees. Be cautious not to strain your neck.
Setu Bandha Sarvangasana (Bridge Pose)
- As you lie on your back, bend your legs and place your feet directly under your knees.
- Slowly lift your hips upward toward the sky. You can use your arms to lift and support your lower back or extend them flat as you grab onto your ankles or hold your hands together.
- Use the muscles in your legs as support and bring your chest toward your chin. If you feel any pressure in your spine, use your hands to support yourself or hold the pose for less time, otherwise, remain here for five breaths.
Supta Matsyendrasana (Reclining Spinal Twist)
- Lie flat on your back with your arms extended straight out to resemble a cross.
- Take a deep inhale and then with an exhale, rotate your hips to the left and bring your right leg over your left. Your right leg is bent at a 90 degree angle and your left leg remains extended straight.
- Place your left hand on your right knee and let the weight and gravity gently bring it closer to the ground.
- Turn your head to look over at your right extended arm for a gentle and enjoyable spinal twist.
- Relax and breathe for as long as you’d like in this pose and then repeat the process for the other side.
- Come to lie face up with your feet on the corners of your mat. Let them drop and point outward.
- Place your arms out at your side with your palms facing upward.
- Close your eyes and let your body relax and release all tension from every muscle, every organ, every pore, every molecule… You get the point.
- Melt and enjoy for as long as you’d like. The longer the better!
Supine Any Time
Supine Poses have restorative qualities and can be practiced by anyone. Because they are so versatile, they are beneficial to those of all ages, gender and skill level. This specific sequence can even be practiced in the comfort of your own bed first thing in the morning or last thing before you go to sleep. Either way, they are a great way to start or end your day. Feel free to also mix it up and combine your favorite Yoga poses with these supine poses during your next Yoga session. Enjoy!