1. Spinal Rocking.
You may want to lock arms behind the back of your thighs instead of around your shins as in the picture. Rock up and down on the spine for a few minutes, going from seated position to all the way back on your shoulders as shown. This simple exercise is the best for the spine.


2. Ear Press
: Roll all the way back on your shoulders and stay there. Let your knees cover your ears, touching the floor if possible. Give yourself a shoulder massage by swaying gently from side to side.

3. Bridge. From the ear press, swing over into the bridge. You may not want to place your hands as shown - I place both thumbs and fingers facing out towards the side and palms under the lower back. Be sure to relax the legs and butt - it's just your arms holding you up.

4. Horizontal Spinal Twist: Not a great photo. Start flat on your back.The left hand is on the right knee, which has been turned to the left across the body. The left hand is trying to push the right knee down towards the floor. The right arm is extended, and head turned to the right.After you've had enough, switch sides.
5. Forward Bend. A standard classical posture. Use a rope or belt around the bottom of your feet to your hands if you can't reach your ankles. Try to keep your back straight and bend from the hips.
6. Cobra. Lift only with the arms. Keep all back muscles relaxed, including butt, back of legs, lower back. Feel the release in the lower back. I usually do the Cobra in two stages: First stage, my hands are out in front and I'm pushing up my upper body while keeping my solar plexus / rib cage on the floor - this gives a nice bend in that area. Then, I move my hands more into the position shown and push all the way up.
7. Lotus. Or half-lotus. Do only what you can. Don't hurt your knees. Feel grounded to the earth. Feel centered and solid.
8. Head Rolls. While still in lotus, roll head slowly around.Get your neck relaxed and worked out in preparation for the shoulder-stand coming up.
9. Forward Bend in Lotus. While still in the same lotus position, interlace fingers behind back, lean forward, trying to place forehead on the floor. Keep arms straight and lift up so they are perpendicular to floor, with palms facing the ceiling (not shown).
10. Hog-Tie. A great pose I believe I invented. Start from the classical BOW pose - on your stomach, grasping your ankles behind your back. Then, roll over onto one side so that your hands holding your ankles hit the floor. Keep feet together, on the floor. You are now lying on your side on the floor, still holding your ankles behind you. Use your legs to pull on your arms, arching out your body like a bow being drawn. Relax the pelvis. Take big breaths into the center chest. Then, flop over onto your other side. It's the best posture I know for opening the heart.When I taught this to James Taylor in the 70's, he dubbed it the "hog-tie pose." Thanks, James.
11. Shoulder-Stand. A classic.Try to get your chin pressing into the clavicle indent on your upper chest.
12. Plough. From the shoulder-stand, come into the plough.Try to keep legs straight - put a pillow under your feet to raise them if necessary.
13. Spinal Twist. A classic, but hard to explain. Just go for it. Before switching to the other side, go on to the hero below.

14. Hero. From the spinal twist, come into the hero. I usually sit here for a while, doing reflexology acupressure on my feet. Dig your thumbs into the sore spots on the bottom and sides of your feet - a tremendous healing benefit.



15. Cowface. After the foot massage, stay in Hero and lock your fingers together behind your upper back.The right elbow in the picture is pointing up, and the left arm reaches behind from below. Hold for a minute. Then, go back to spinal twist/hero/cowface on the other side.
16. Downward Dog. The infamous foundation of power yoga - who knows why? But there is a place for this posture if used as one of the series.The only one of this series that you might wish you had a sticky mat for.


17. Single Leg Stretch. There's much tension held in the legs, where the largest muscle groups are, and so we work them again, this time individually.

Before switching legs, go on to the next posture.

18. Single Leg Reverse. Stretch out the front of that same leg. Raise head high and emphasize the arch in the back. I usually support myself on my fists - not open palm on floor as shown. Put the foot of the bent leg more in front of you than shown - so the heel is under the thigh of the extended leg and you can collapse down on the bent leg, putting your forehead on the floor as the second part of the pose (not shown).

Then, repeat 17 and 18 on the other side.

19. Peacock. An optional pose. Works the solar plexus area.
20. Child Pose. A good pose to end with, or use the classical corpse pose - just lie still on your back and integrate the effects of the session, by continuing to feel the sensations and energy currents in your body.