This gentle backbend helps to open your chest, enabling you to breathe more fully. It also releases your shoulders, which can become hunched and tight in the stresses and strains of daily life. Bridge pose creates strength and stability in your pelvic floor, and legs and lower abdomen. Make sure that you continue to breathe evenly throughout the movements, so that you feel no sense of strain.

1. Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet planted firmly on the floor, hip-width apart. Check that your feet are parallel. Place your hands on the floor beside your hips with your palms facing down.

2. As you breathe in, press your feet and hands firmly into the floor. You’ll feel your hips lift – take them as far up as yopu can without straining. Clasp your hands behind your back, and push your knuckles toward your heels. Rock slightly from side to side in order to get your shoulder blades tucked right in beneath you.  Hold the pose for three to six breaths, then come down gently. Repeat two to three times.

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