An intermediate yoga routine is designed for practitioners who are comfortable with the basic poses and want to explore more challenging asanas while further improving their strength, flexibility, and mindfulness. Here’s an intermediate-level yoga routine:
Duration: Aim for a 40-50 minute session, and increase the duration or intensity gradually as you progress. Practice this routine 3-5 times a week for optimal results.
1. Centering and Breathing (2 minutes)
- Start by sitting cross-legged or on your heels with your eyes closed.
- Take slow, deep breaths, focusing on each inhalation and exhalation.
- Set an intention for your practice or express gratitude.
2. Warm-Up and Sun Salutations (7 minutes)
- Cat-Cow Stretch: Start on your hands and knees, arch your back on inhale (Cow Pose), and round your back on exhale (Cat Pose).
- Downward-Facing Dog: Push your hips up, forming an inverted “V” shape, while pressing your heels toward the floor.
- Sun Salutations (2-3 rounds): Include Mountain Pose, Forward Bend, Plank, Chaturanga Dandasana, Upward-Facing Dog, and Downward-Facing Dog.
3. Standing Poses (10 minutes)
- Warrior II (Virabhadrasana II): Step one foot back, bend your front knee, and extend your arms to the sides.
- Triangle Pose (Trikonasana): Extend your legs and reach your front arm down to your shin or the floor, and extend your top arm upward.
- Extended Side Angle Pose (Utthita Parsvakonasana): Bend your front knee, place your forearm on your thigh, and extend your other arm overhead.
4. Balance Poses (8 minutes)
- Tree Pose (Vrksasana): Stand on one leg and place the sole of your other foot on your inner thigh or calf.
- Eagle Pose (Garudasana): Cross one leg over the other and wrap your arms together.
- Half Moon Pose (Ardha Chandrasana): Balancing on one leg, extend your other leg and raise your arm to the ceiling.
5. Seated Poses (8 minutes)
- Boat Pose (Navasana): Sit with your knees bent, feet on the floor, and lift your feet and upper body.
- Seated Forward Bend (Paschimottanasana): Extend your legs and reach for your toes.
- Butterfly Pose (Baddha Konasana): Bring the soles of your feet together in front of you.
6. Backbends (5 minutes)
- Upward Bow Pose (Urdhva Dhanurasana): Lie on your back, bend your knees, and lift your chest.
- Locust Pose (Salabhasana): Lie on your stomach and lift your chest and legs off the ground.
- Camel Pose (Ustrasana): Kneel and arch your back, reaching for your heels.
7. Cool Down and Relaxation (3 minutes)
- Child’s Pose (Balasana): Kneel with your big toes touching and sit back on your heels while reaching your arms forward.
- Corpse Pose (Savasana): Lie flat on your back with your arms and legs extended. Close your eyes and relax.
8. Final Breathing and Meditation (5 minutes)
- Sit comfortably with your eyes closed.
- Focus on your breath, inhaling and exhaling deeply and slowly.
- Let go of any remaining stress or thoughts.
Finish your practice with a few minutes of meditation, allowing your mind to become still and peaceful.
This intermediate yoga routine builds on the basics, introducing more challenging poses and a longer duration of practice. It’s a great way to enhance your strength, flexibility, and mindfulness. As you become more proficient in your practice, you can further advance to advanced poses and sequences.