My 5 go to Yoga poses for releasing tension in the neck & shoulders
My 5 go to Yoga poses for releasing tension in the neck & shoulders.
Welcome to Taurus season. Taurus rules over the neck and invites in mobility and stability, stabilizing our head and mobility allowing us to look around and see the world rather than what is right in front of us!
Earthy Taurus can be stubborn and like their comforts. They do rule over the 2nd house which is all about cash & possessions, so it can be a challenge to get them to try something different. This may create tension due to feeling anxious at the thought of coming out of their comfort zone. They can also very focused on the task at hand and will take their time on what they are currently doing. This may create tension in the neck & shoulders or neck pain or general discomfort in the neck & shoulders as they may lock themselves into how they hold their body until the task is complete.
Not a Taurus sun sign but resonate with the above? Go check out your whole Natal chart for free at Astrodienst.
Obviously if you have serious neck pain I would always suggest seeing your GP, a Physio or Chiropractor. However if you’ve just been sat at your computer all day or maybe you’ve woken up and feel some tension in your neck & shoulders, perhaps you are waiting for your next massage appointment to roll round and need some yoga to aid some release.
Well these are my 5 go to yoga poses to release tension and tightness from my neck & shoulders. They are also really great if you are travelling and stuck in a seat for long periods.
Puppy pose / Anahatasana:
Starting in Table Top pose, hands under the shoulders, knees under the hips. Bring your forehead down to rest on your hands/arms/a block or cushion or the mat, keep your tailbone lifted above your knees. If comfortable stretch your arms towards the top of your mat. Hold for around 5 breaths, but release sooner if you need to.
Thread the needle pose / Parsva Balasana:
From Table Top pose reach your right arm up to the ceiling in an open twist. Scoop your right arm through and under your left arm placing the back of the hand, the elbow, shoulder & right ear on the mat - use a block or cushion under your head & shoulder if your can’t comfortably reach the mat.
Gently using your left hand to push into the mat to keep the left shoulder above the right to stay active in the pose. Hold for up 5 breaths, gently push into the left hand to lift back up, reach the right up up again in an open twist before returning to table top.
Repeat on the left side as above.
Eagle arms / Garundasana:
Seated on your mat or chair stretch both arms out in front at shoulder height. Take the right arm under the left crossing the elbows and placing the hands on the opposite shoulders. Stay here or lift the hands to point the finger tips up to the ceiling while keeping the elbows crossed/connected. Stay in the 2nd version, return to the 1st or see if the hands can touch back to back. If that is comfortable stay there or you may try the last version placing the right finger tips onto the left palm - keep the left finger tips pointing upwards & don’t grab onto the thumb!
Hold for up to 5 breaths, unravel the arms and repeat taking the left arm under the right.
Cow face arms / Gomukhasana:
Seated in a chair or on your mat, we are only going through the arms for this practice.
Stretch your right arm up towards the ceiling, bend the elbow & place your palm to the back of your head, nape of neck or shoulders. Take your left arm over your head & hold onto your right elbow to keep the right arm active - don’t let the elbow drop forward.
Hold for around 5 breaths, the arm may start to feel a little numb! Release your left arm, straighten your right arm & slowly lower your right arm down.
Pause for a few breaths before repeating on the left arm.
Seated neck stretch:
This last one is my all time favourite stretch for my neck & shoulders, especially when I’m travelling!
Seated move your head over towards one shoulder as though you are trying to place your ear on top of your shoulder, don’t lift the arm to push the shoulder up. Holding for half a breath or longer before lifting your head back to centre and repeating on the other side.
To go deeper into the stretch, take the same side arm up and over the crown and rest the hand on the opposite shoulder. For example, take your right ear towards your right shoulder, lift your right arm up and over your head resting your right hand on your left ear. To go even deeper from here stretch your left arm out to the side keeping your arm low so your finger tips point down to your mat.
When you are ready release and repeat on the other side.
I hope you enjoyed my 5 go to yoga poses for releasing tension in the neck & shoulders, let me know if the comments which one is your favourite. To watch the full 20 minute yoga practice click here, or save this blog so you can keep coming back to it as and when you need to. Use any of the buttons below to share on social media as we all know someone with neck tension or tight shoulders.