Teacher's Notebook: Yoga Chair Sequence
Chair Yoga is a highly adaptive class that allows anyone to reap the benefits of yoga, with very few risks. Ideal for people coming off an injury, people who don't feel comfortable in a more conventional vinyasa class, and for those who need a little extra assistance with balance or strength.
Mini Sun Salutation
Begin by standing behind your chair (placed on a yoga mat) in Mountain Pose, feet parallel and hip-distance apart. Inhale arms up (or keep one hand on the chair for additional support). Exhale into Chair Pose, bending your knees and placing your hands on the chair back with elbows straight and fingers outstretched. Stay for several breaths; inhale arms overhead and return to Mountain Pose.
From Mountain Pose, exhale your arms down by your sides, moving them slightly toward each other behind your back for a heart-opening, chest expanding Beach Ball Hold. Take a few deep breaths here. Inhale arms overhead and release them to the back of the chair for Rocking Chair—lifting up your toes and pressing back onto your heels for a little balance and a sweet calf stretch. Release the toes and once more inhale up to Mountain Pose, lifting the arms up overhead, into a slight backbend. Exhale as you bring your hands to heart or to the back of the chair. Breathe here for several breaths.