Did you say twist?

“Twist again like we did last summer,
come on, let’s twist again like we did last year.” 

Ok so maybe the dance move is not exactly what we’re referring to in yoga when we say “to twist” but you have to admit that song puts a little pep in your step. In yoga when we say twist, we’re referring to the action of rotating your spine; think of it like creating a twist in your spinal cord. Twists are a great way to relieve tension or pain in the neck, back, shoulders, hips and abdomen. By stretching, lengthening and strengthening the muscles, tendons, ligaments and connective tissue of all these areas, yoga twists provide many excellent benefits for the body.  

Yoga twists…

-improve digestion
-massage internal organs
-elongate the spine
-stimulate circulation 
-promote better posture
-improve breathing
-support and promote a healthy nervous system
-increase spinal mobility

Julie Gudmestad of Gudmestad Yoga Studio, a yoga instructor and physical therapist for almost 30 years, suggests “practicing a simple spinal twist once or twice a day to maintain or restore the normal spinal rotation.” Twists are often a regular part of any yoga class but they can easily be incorporated into part of your daily routine. Hilaria Baldwin takes this idea to a whole new level in her 365 days of yoga craziness. Now, you don’t necessarily have to get all twisted up wearing some heels but don’t be afraid to integrate some of these awesome yoga twists into your daily activities.

-prayer twist

-reverse triangle

(with a block to support)

(stack those shoulders)

-revolving half moon

-windmill pose 

-twisting pigeon 

-revolved reverse crescent 

-seated spinal twist

-spinal twist/twisted root (spinal twist with eagle legs)

-table twist (spinal twist on your stomach)

-twisting camel/half camel

-dancing shieva 

Twist and Shout good yogis! Twist and Shout!