Ready to really get your blood flowing, hips opened, and heart pumping? This 30-minute advanced yoga vinyasa flow is the perfect mid-length series to practice your strength and find your balance. We will start with some core work and then shift to strength and balancing poses. This class is geared towards the advanced student, but feel free to modify along the way.
What You’ll Need For this Session
Set aside 30-35 minutes for this vinyasa sequence. You’ll need your mat, a bottle of water, and a little extra space as we will dive into some twists and hip openers. If you like, grab a blanket, block, or pillow for modifications or an extra-restful savasana.
First, Set Your Intention
It’s important to set your intention before any yoga class or sequence – or really any heart-centered activity of your day! Setting an intention helps give your mind a purpose, something to remember throughout the session when you’re feeling tired or like you want to give up. Having your intention to hold on to during the practice and it makes the process much more enjoyable and rewarding. Consider dedicating it to your health, finding inner strength, your improving determination, or a loved one.
Beginning and Abs Sequence
Start by lying down on your back, settling into your mat. Take a few breaths, then bring knees to chest and roll side to side. Do a few sets of ankle circles to lubricate your joints. Switch directions.
Pull your forehead to your knees and lift the back of your sacrum off the mat. Release and press your low back and head back into the mat. Extend your feet to the sky, point or flex your toes, then pull the heels back to you glutes. Remember to keep your core engaged throughout. Extend the legs overhead and pause. Press the thighs up towards the front of the mat.
Extend hands overhead, point your toes, then crunch up towards the feet feeling your core activated. Create a V by extending your arms and legs, then return to pointing them towards the sky. Repeats a few times times, then pull knees back to chest. Breathe.
Rock and roll time! From a lying position, roll up to a modified Boat pose. Pause, then extend to full Boat. Hold here for a few seconds, then gently make your way to Plank pose.
After Plank, stagger or stack your heels, spin to the right, and come into side plank. Breathe and pause. Spin back to regular Plank, then spin the opposite way for a left-sided Plank. Again, return to plank, then gently release to the floor.
With hands to the ground, come up to Cobra pose. Release, then press to high plank again and take a Downward Dog. Stay here for a few breaths, lift your heels, then drop back down to stretch your calves.
Hop forward to the head of your mat and find your forward fold. Stretch your legs and roll to standing position. Take a small pause, then come to Mountain pose. Reach high above you, then bend to your right, then left, and back to center.
Pull the left knee into the chest, flex your left foot. Practice balance by putting arms out to side or into a prayer position at the chest. Pull your knee back behind you into a squat, then return to center. Repeat three times, then on the third time pause to pump left and right in the squat position. Pull the knee back up to the belly. Extend knee out in front of you into a Pistol Prep. Return foot to the ground, then find your forward fold and rest for a few breaths. Repeat this series with the right leg.
Return to plank, then side plank at the right side, and lift your top leg. Return to plank, switch sides and lift top leg. Come back into plank, perform a chaturanga, then settle into downward dog.
Dynamic Sun Salutation Sequence
Here we are going to move into our dynamic sun salutation with a strong focus on hip-openers.
In Downward Dog, lift your left leg to the sky (Three-Legged Dog), then circle the extended leg up and around to open and lubricate the hips. Reach the right leg high and bend back over your planted right leg. Pull our thigh to chest, then extend leg back up, hurdle prep, and full hurdle. Return to downward dog, then pull leg through into a lunge. Pause, then move your body up to a high lunge. Spin yourself open to Warrior II. Keep your knee stacked over your ankle. Reach back into reversed Warrior with a bind, then reach under your leg to achieve a full Lunge with bind.
From your lunge, reach fingertips to the ground, extending your right leg, lift left arm up overhead, then transition into Star pose. After a pause, transition into a Wide-Leg Forward Fold. Bend your right leg, extend arms out ahead and shift weight onto the left side, pumping back and forth. Drop back into Wide-Leg Forward Fold. Allow spine to feel heavy. Return to Star, then find your chaturanga to repeat the series on the left side.
Drop into Goddess pose. Allow hips to drop straight down. If possible, lift your heels to sink even deeper. Lower your heels, then drop into your alternating forward lunges, right to left. Lunge all the way to the right, reaching your fingertips forward. See if you can go deeper than last time. Seal with a Wide Leg Forward Fold.
Rise up halfway, clasp hands behind you, then bend your head to the floor. Extend your clasped arms out toward your head. Rise up to Star, Warrior II to front, followed by Reverse Warrior, then return to High Plank. Lower and rise to Upward dog, then move into Downward Dog.
Now, we’ll repeat this process on both sides in a shortened version. Reach right leg to sky, two hip circles, the bend knee back and move into Hurdle Prep or full Hurdle pose. Bring leg under your chest into Toppling Triangle and dip two to three times, maintaining your stability. Transition into Wild Thing from here, then plant your hand and return to Three-Legged Dog.
Bring your leg up lightly to a right Lunge. Move up to High Lunge, then open to Warrior II. Lunge into your right knee and take a bind. Press your hands down into Triangle, the reaching arms out to the side. Come to Star, pause, then drop into Wide Leg Forward Fold. Return to your right lunge, then pump right to leg. Repeat three times, then return to Wide Leg Forward Fold. Rise again to Star, then into Warrior II, Reverse Warrior, and finally Chaturanga.
Take a few full breaths before repeating on the left side. Come to forward fold and rest. Move up to mountain pose to prepare for the final balancing sequence.
Bend at the knees and find balance in your feet. Extend your arms out to each side and lift your chest. Keep your weight on the right leg, then move the left thigh over right leg, sinking into your hips. Interlock your left elbow through your right and bind the hands. Pull your belly in and curve your spine as in Cat pose, maintaining your balance.
Extend your right leg and bring your left leg back behind you, planting it into a Lunge, with arms still bound, lift chest and arms up above you. Gently release your arms and drop them to the ground, squaring off hips to come to Revolved Half-Moon. Lift your right arm and lift your chest to the sky. Then plant hands back to the ground and settle into Half-Moon facing the left. Come to standing splits, drop hip and return to forward fold. Roll up to standing position. Repeat on the opposite side.
Take a restful forward fold, stretching the backs of your legs and allowing your head to hang heavy. Take a half-way lift, then return to a deep fold and grasp your ankles. Round your spine. Come to a halfway lift, then bend knees and gently come to a seated position on the ground.
Grounding Sequence and Savasana
Gently lower to the floor and lie on your back with knees to chest. Pause here for a few moments. Wrap your right leg up and over the left, then bring the left toes to the mat and drop your knees to the left. Twist your torso to the right to come to a reclined Eagle twist. Return to center and unwind. Placed feet on the ground and draw your sits bones up to a modified Bridge. Slowly release and bring your sacrum to mat. Repeat the Eagle pose with the left leg over the right and body twisted to the left side. Bring feet back to the mat and prepare for another Bridge or full Wheel pose.
Finally, bring your knees into your chest, give yourself a squeeze, and release your legs and arms out into a much deserved savasana. Rest here as long as you like.
Wrap it Up
Whew! This 30-minute sequence is packed with sequences that will challenge and support every muscle in your body. Remember, if any part of this sequence doesn’t feel right for your body, allow for modifications and be gentle. Now you’re well on your way to an invigorating and power-packed day!
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Paving the way for yogic living in Nebraska, Jacqueline Roberts is adored by her students as a constant source of support and inspiration. A knack for writing allows her to share what she has learned with the world.