A lot of people have asked me for a Yoga routine that they can follow. I’ve always resisted.

Ideally there should be NO routine in your YOGA practice – it’s not about mastering 15-20 poses; but about having overall Flexibility, Strength and being Sensitive to what your Body requires at that particular MOMENT. And only then you have a chance to be fresh every single time you do Yoga. Only then can you keep the wonder and interest alive – and then Meditation can begin to happen to you. No Auto-Pilot routines of Asanas! Ideally.

However, till you develop the interest and time to figure it out yourself – here’s what I’d recommend – the TOTAL YOGI workout!

How often should you practice Yoga?  I’d say, a minimum of 7 days a week!  Yes, like you eat or bathe everyday; so too should yoga be practiced daily.

How long should you practice? At least 40 mins. I don’t expect you to sustain focus for longer and you’ll end up wasting a lot of time in between especially if you’re practicing by yourself. So keep it tight! Any less than 40 mins is tough – simply because we are doing Asanas, Pranayam & Meditation!

When? Preferably early morning – after your toilet & shower – before eating. Else, evening.

What constitutes the Total Yogi Work-out? It should include Flexibility, Cardio, Balance and Strength training apart from Relaxation & Meditation. Each major Body-Part should have an exercise. Asana trains muscle endurance – so each pose should be held  for 1 min. Your target is to hold this 1 min with only 12 breaths; or lower! For further Fitness – Isometric exercises (push-ups, squats, crunches) will follow the Asana.

For all the Instructions and Knowledge about the various Asanas please refer to our Asana Directory.

The TOTAL YOGI Work-out!

> Start with stating your Sankalp 3 times (that’s a deep resolve you have – could be a goal for your practice or a life-goal. Practicing Yoga will give you the strength and clarity to achieve it)

Kapalbhati Kriya a set of 100 exhalations.

Warm-up stretches (essential to move the joints and stretch the muscles)

Surya Namaskaar either slow – 11 rounds; or fast for 5 mins. Alternate this everyday.

Pranamasana Surya namaskar sun salutation

Pranamasana

Hasta Uttanasana surya namaskar sun salutation

Hasta Uttanasana

Padahastasana surya namaskar sun salutation

Padahastasana

Ashwa Sanchalanasana Surya namaskar sun salutation

Ashwa Sanchalanasana

Santolanasana surya namaskar sun salutation

Santolanasana

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ashtanga Namaskar Surya namaskar sun salutation

Ashtanga Namaskar

Bhujangasana Surya namaskar sun salutation

Bhujangasana

Parvatasana surya namaskar sun salutation

Parvatasana

Ashwa Sanchalanasana surya namaskar sun salutation

Ashwa Sanchalanasana

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Padahastasana surya namaskar sun salutation

Padahastasana

Hasta Uttanasana surya namaskar sun salutation

Hasta Uttanasana

Pranamasana Surya namaskar sun salutation

Pranamasana

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Balance – Veerabhadrasana 3 (Warrior 3) 1 min on each leg

> Lower BodyNatrajasana (1 min) {for fitter yogis; follow it immediately with 15 Squats}

> Upper Body Santolanasana (1 min) {for fitter yogis; follow it with 15 Push-ups and Chaturanga Dandasana (30 secs)}

Veerabhadrasana 3, Yoga, Total Yoga, total yogi workout

Veerabhadrasana 3

Natrajasana, Yoga, Total Yoga

Natrajasana

 

Santolanasana, Yoga, Total Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Santolanasana

Chaturanga Dandasana, Yoga, Total Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Chaturanga Dandasana

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

> CoreNaukasana (Boat pose) 1 min {for fitter yogis; do 15 Crunches before Naukasana}

Kati Naukasana (Side Boat pose) 1 min each side {for fitter yogis; do 15 Side-Crunches each side before Kati Naukasana}

Sampattasana (Plank) 1 min

> Back –  Lie down on your stomach and raise your arms and legs upwards 5 times; each time strengthening the lower back.

Shalabhasana (Locust pose) 30 sec

Naukasana, Yoga, Total Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Naukasana

 

 

Yoga, Total Yoga, Kati Naukasana

Kati Naukasana

Sampattasana, Total Yoga, Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Sampattasana

Shalabhasana, Locust pose, yoga, total yoga, total yogi, yoga program, yoga workout

Shalabhasana

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ardha Matsyendrasana, Total Yoga, Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Ardha Matsyendrasana

 

 

> Spinal Twist – Ardha Matsyendrasana (Seated Spinal Twist) 1 min each side

 

> Cool-Down StretchesJanusirsasana (30sec on each leg); Pawanmuktasana (30sec) and Merudandasana (Lying Spinal twist)

 

> Inversions – Sarvangasana (Shoulder stand) 1 min

Halasana (Plough) 1min (followed by the counter-pose – Matsyasana (fish pose))

Sirsasana (Head stand) 1 min

Sarvangasana, Total Yoga, Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Sarvangasana

Halasana, Total Yoga, Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Halasana

Matsyasana, Total Yoga, Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Matsyasana

Sirsasana, Total Yoga, Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Sirsasana

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

> Relaxation – Shavasana (11 deep, long breaths)

> Pranayam – {Sitting in Padmasana/ Vajrasana. Sit in Sukhasana only if the first 2 poses are difficult for you.}

Bandhas (Hormonal locks): Maha Bandha (3 times)

Anulom-Vilom Pranayam (Alternate nostril breathing – 7 rounds)

Shavasana, Total Yoga, Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Shavasana

Maha Bandha, Total Yoga, Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Maha Bandha

Anulom-Vilom Pranayam, Total Yoga, Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Anulom-Vilom Pranayam

 

 

 

 

 

 

> Dhyaan (Meditation) – 10 mins

– The most important part of your YOGA practice; in fact everything you have done is only a training for your body to be fit and flexible to sit in Meditation. Even the Breathing exercise was just to calm the mind in preparation for Meditation.

– There are so many different Meditations; choose one that you resonate with.

Dhyaan, Padmasana, Yoga, Total Yogi workout

Dhyaan (Meditation)

– You could try this. Sitting in Padmasana/ Vajrasana/ Sukhasana. Close your eyes. Begin to breathe slowly and deeply. Count down from 27 breaths to 0. If you lose your count as you get distracted – resume from 27!

NOW, bring your Awareness to your eyebrow-center. Visualize a symbol that you like (Om, Cross, Crescent, God’s image, Guru’s image, Flower, etc). Choose one and practice retaining Awareness of it.

Choose from various Meditations till you find one that you love. It’s important because the ONLY motivation you will have to do all the YOGA practices is the 10 mins of BLISS you will start to experience sooner rather than later!

Of course, check with your Yoga teacher to learn each pose perfectly. Try this for 21 days; and let me know how you feel?

Wishing you all the best with the TOTAL YOGI Work-out!