The Restorative Yoga Flow That Doesn't Require a Mountain of Props
Legs Up the Wall
Sit sideways next to a wall, with the wall on your left. Lie down on your right side, facing away from the wall with your butt touching it. Using your arms, lift your legs up the wall as you roll over to the left onto your back. Allow your left hand to rest on your heart, and right hand on belly. Stay here for at least 10 deep breaths.
Reclining Goddess Pose
While sitting on the ground, place your rolled up blanket (or towel or pillow) lengthwise behind sitz bones, and gently lie back so upper back and head are supported by pillows or blanket. Allow body to gently rest on your support of choice, adjusting placement until comfortable. Bend knees, take feet together and knees apart, and allow arms to lie long on either side of you. Stay here for at least 10 deep breaths. If you have access, you can do this with a bolster the long way.
Supine Spinal Twist
Lie on back. Hug right knee into chest. Take left hand to outer right thigh, and guide right knee to the left. Reach right arm out to the side, on the ground. You can stay with a neutral neck or, if it feels good, look to the right. If your bent knee doesn't easily rest on the ground, use a pillow, or your sweater, or anything soft you have to place underneath it so that you are not using any effort to stay here. You can keep left hand on right thigh to allow its weight to ground the right leg, or if you prefer, reach left arm long to the left so arms make one long line. Stay here for 10 deep breaths, then repeat on the other side.
Supported Seated Forward Fold
From a seated position, extend legs long in front of you, just wide enough to place a pillow or your rolled-up blanket between them. Keeping knees soft, take a deep breath in, and exhale as you lean forward, at first keeping your back as straight as you can. Relax your torso onto your pillow(s), rolled-up towel or blanket, or anything at all that will allow you to relax your forehead onto something. Allow your arms to release and relax on either side of your legs. Breathe here for at least 10 deep breaths.
Supported Child's Pose
Come to a kneeling position with wide knees. Rest a pillow or rolled-up blanket between thighs and lie down on it, allowing your head to rest completely. Allow arms to relax to the ground, reaching a bit forward. Close eyes and breathe here for 10 deep breaths. If more comfortable, turn your head to the side as pictured.
Alternate Nostril Breathing
Begin in easy seat pose and close eyes. Sit up on your sweatshirt or a pillow, or anything that will allow knees to fall below hips. Drop left hand to lay palm down on left thigh any way that feels comfortable. Extend fingers on right hand like you're waving at someone. Bend peace fingers—pointer and middle finger—so they curl into palm. Rest right ring finger and thumb on either side of nostrils, lightly touching them but not constricting. Take a big breath in and a big breath out, then close off the right nostril with thumb and inhale through the left nostril fully for a count of 4. At the top of that breath, close off the left nostril with your ring finger, hold and retain the breath for a count of 4. Release the right nostril and exhale for a count of 4. Inhale deeply for a count of 4 through the right nostril, close it off, hold and retain the breath for a count of 4. Release the left nostril as you exhale completely through it for a count of 4. Proceed to inhale deeply through the left, repeating the cycle. The count of breath can be as long as you like, keeping the inhales, retention, and exhales even. Do this as many rounds as you like, being sure to exhale through the left nostril to complete your last cycle.