"Lazy" Yoga or Yoga-Adjacent Videos
July 10, 2017 7:56 AM   Subscribe

I am in search of something on the very gentle/non-exercisey end of the yoga video spectrum to use as sort of a moving meditation practice (something to get me moving around and inhabiting my own body without trying to improve or strain it in any way). Unfortunately, my idea of "gentle" yoga doesn't quite match up to whatever criteria people are using to name their videos.

There's a few common movements/poses I'd like to avoid:

- Getting up and coming back down to the mat repeatedly, particularly with a lot of back arching. This is the bread and butter of a typical yoga video and I'm sure it can be beneficial -- but it's the opposite of what I want to be doing
- All fours and plank/side plank positions (downward-facing dog is okay though)
- Lunges (love the stretch, hate this particular means of getting it)
- Off-balance poses like triangle pose (twists are okay if you're not standing up)
- If I'm being honest, really any standing poses at all
- Any fast movements designed to bring up your heart rate or 'warm you up!!' (not avoiding this for health reasons, it's just not what I'm looking for in this instance)
- On the flip side, I'm also not looking for 20 minutes of Savasanah or sitting still with legs crossed doing traditional meditation

In some cases, videos are separated into sections for different general body positions, so if there's a video that starts out with a lot of lying/sitting poses and then gets into the standing/kneeling poses toward the end, that would be fine, I could just stop the video partway through.

Bonus points if there is a very calming/soothing instructor vibe -- I am aware of and like Yoga with Adriene, but so far I've only found one video of hers that was free of the more challenging/invigorating poses. If there are other specific ones I could try that would be great!

Basically, I am looking for something focused on more of the 'lazy'/feel-good stretches that you often see sprinkled into workout videos as a break from the hard stuff -- like Child's Pose or Cobbler Pose. If this is a thing, and you've seen videos of this kind, I'd like to have more options to choose from!
posted by space snail to Health & Fitness (10 answers total) 25 users marked this as a favorite
I can't recommend any specific videos or instructors, but try searching for "yin" or "restorative" yoga, both of which are slower, more relaxing, and usually all seated/lying poses.
posted by Metroid Baby at 8:12 AM on July 10, 2017 [4 favorites]

"Restorative yoga" may be the terminology you were missing. Something like this? Many restorative practices will have you using props to really help you just settle in for the long haul in those juicy relaxing poses.
posted by hollyholly at 8:17 AM on July 10, 2017 [4 favorites]

Response by poster: Oh wow yes "restorative" yoga looks like what I'm looking for. After striking out with "gentle" I guess I assumed all the descriptors relating to gentleness would be equally unhelpful.

I'm glad this is a real thing and not just a weird set of demands I had!
posted by space snail at 8:24 AM on July 10, 2017 [2 favorites]

Key words are "chair yoga" are the search words you are looking for. There will be uses of the chair as an assist device/support but you can skip those sections. At least it will give you ideas of modifying it for your purposes? I like this one.
posted by tipsyBumblebee at 8:25 AM on July 10, 2017

Response by poster: Thanks guys!

I think I am set to browse on my own armed with the proper search terms, but if anyone has a video they particularly like, recommendations are still welcome!
posted by space snail at 8:28 AM on July 10, 2017

Oooo...here's a full channel MindfulChairYoga
posted by tipsyBumblebee at 8:28 AM on July 10, 2017

Hath yoga flow easy groundwork This particular video is one of my favorites for relaxing and being mindful. It all takes places on the floor.
posted by ilovewinter at 11:56 AM on July 10, 2017

I came here to recommend yin yoga but I wouldn't exactly call it relaxing. Yin poses work not your muscles, but your ligaments, tendons and connective tissue. While most poses take place on the floor (sitting or lying), they are typically held for 2-5 minutes each. Some of the poses can be intense, and even for poses that aren't intense, it can be INCREDIBLY hard to sit still for 2-5 minutes. (This is where the mindfulness comes in.)

If this sounds too challenging for you then yes, restorative yoga is what you want. But the end result I always have after a yin class is feeling like I just has a Thai massage. I love it.
posted by Brittanie at 2:00 PM on July 10, 2017

Yes, restorative yoga! It's a huge part of my practice and I find it very... well, restorative. Always makes me feel calmer and better all over. Yin and some hatha practices often meet your criteria too.

I love the site DoYogaWithMe.com. Tons of free videos that are very good quality. You can search for "Restorative" practices specifically and about a dozen come up... I think I've done most or all.

I also really like all the Nicky Jones classes on there -- start with "Love Yourself."

Another good way to identify a restorative class is to see if it uses a bolster. It seems like they usually do. And if you don't have a bolster, I recommend investing in one if you can. Helps so much with getting into really relaxed poses.
posted by the turtle's teeth at 3:34 PM on July 10, 2017

so yes, yin or restorative yoga is good. Yin can be intense in that it's holding poses for a long time and it can REALLY let you sink into a pose.

5 parks yoga "deep stretch" ones can be good too. It's not yin or restorative, but it's a very good gentle yoga. It's on my list of night time yoga videos.

"Yoga with kassandra" has a lot of yin videos, most of which are pretty good.

some choice ones:

If you need more recommendations then don't hesitate to mefi mail me.
posted by escher at 9:14 PM on July 10, 2017

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