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Yoga Poses to Relieve Stress and Loosen Up Your Shoulders

  • Fredy Soberanis

    Dolphin at Wall

    Place forearms on the wall parallel to one another below shoulder height, fingertips up, keeping elbows shoulder distance apart. Take a few steps back from the wall and allow head to relax down between arms. Torso should be parallel to the ground. Breathe here for ten deep breaths.

  • Fredy Soberanis

    Standing Side Bend

    Stand with feet hip distance apart. Reach arms over head on either side of your face, and grab right wrist with left hand. Take a big inhale to get long, and use exhale to lean over to the right, bending at waist. Drop top shoulder away from ear, and experiment with taking your gaze to the ground and to the ceiling. Breathe where feels best for your shoulder for at least five deep breaths and repeat on other side.

  • Fredy Soberanis

    Standing Foreward Fold with Clasp

    Stand with feet hip distance apart, clasp hands behind back, and take a big inhale to open chest. On exhale, soften knees and fold forward, letting head fall toward the ground. If you feel comfortable, bend one knee and then the other, turning chest right to left, getting more into shoulders. For a deeper shoulder opening, press the meat of your palms together. Stay here for ten deep breaths.

  • Fredy Soberanis

    Eagle Arms

    Begin seated any way comfortable (you can do this in your desk chair if you like). Wrap right arm under left arm, take forearms together, and press palms together, fingertips facing up. Reach elbows up to shoulder height, fingertips facing away from you to deepen the shoulder opening. Breathe here for ten deep breaths and repeat on other side.

  • Fredy Soberanis

    Supported Fish

    While sitting on the ground, place a medium-height block behind you beneath where shoulder blades will lay and place another block behind that one to use as a pillow for head. Allow body to gently rest on the blocks, adjusting their placement until you are comfortable, with arms resting on either side. Stay here for at least ten deep breaths. Start with blocks on medium height and adjust from there. For deeper shoulder opening, take the shoulder blade block to the medium height and rest head in clasped hands with elbows wide (pictured).

  • Fredy Soberanis

    8-Point Shoulder Opener

    Lie face down on belly. Reach right arm out at a 90-degree angle from body with palm facing up. Use left hand under left shoulder to start to press away, bending left knee. If comfortable, reach left toes behind right knee as you rotate body. Reach left arm to ceiling, flex palm, and allow hand to fall toward the ground with gravity. Stay there for as long as you like. If this feels easy, allow left hand to meet the right in a clasp and breathe there for as long as feels good. (Note: This is a deep one, so come out of the pose as slowly and mindfully as you came in.)

 

Heidi Kristoffer

Heidi Kristoffer is the creator and producer of Microsoft Bing Fitness Yoga & MSN Yoga, creator of CrossFlowX, wellness expert for multiple online platforms, and mama to baby twin girls.  More →

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