Yoga for Surfers - High Lunge Anjaneyasana Cresent Lunge Pose - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Yoga is one of the best means to prepare for yourself any kind of shred, as I’ve already demonstrated with my Yoga for Wintersports sequence. It not only prepares the body, bones and muscles with strengthening and lengthening exercises, but also trains the mind to focus, balance, and stay calm in all situations.

Photography: Conny Marshaus // Shirt by Om Shanti Yogawear, fitness pants / surf leggings by Roxy

When the first splashes of cold wash over your scalp you’re still feeling ecstatic about finally being back in the water. But after you tried to duck dive your beloved board through the third whitewater barrel in a row, you wonder if there’s any quick fix for the jelly your arms are turning into. And you want to bite your own behind for not starting to prepare for your trip a little sooner…

These were exactly my thoughts when I was invited on a Girls Surf Camp last year and to add a little bit of extra motivation, we went to shoot it in an extra scenic location.

Make sure to learn the basics from an experienced teacher before you dive into a home practice and always check with a health care practitioner that you’re fit for the practice in case of injuries or sickness. There are some options for more advanced poses in this sequence as well so please only go for them if you feel confident with your inversions.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Balasana Childs Pose - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Childs Pose (Balasana)

Start in Childs Pose (Balasana) with your knees wide out to the sides. You can rest your arms on your sides or put your palms together above your head in Pranam.
Feel your body resting on the ground, your weight being carried by the earth and your upper body releasing. Tune into your breath. Let if become full and long and even. Find balance between the in- and the exhale.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Adho Mukha Svanasana Downward Facing Dog - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Downward Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)

Straighten your arms out in front of you, press your palms into the ground, wrist creases aligned with the short end of the mat, and lift your knees to come into Downward Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana). Walk your legs out for a couple of breaths, bending one stretching the other, and look from side to side, releasing tense muscles in the neck.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Utthita Chaturanga Dandasana Plank Pose -  - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Plank Pose (Utthita Chaturanga Dandasana)

With an inhale, roll forward to bring your shoulders above your wrists. Pull the navel in towards the spine, let your heart sink down a tiny bit to integrate your upper arms into the shoulder socket and push your heels out towards the back. Exhale, bend your knees and move your hips back and up to Downward Facing Dog. Repeat this flow until you feel your whole body warmed up.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Vashistasana Side Plank Pose -  - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Side Plank Pose (Vashistasana)

Come back to shoulders above wrists with an inhale and let both heels sink down to the right with an exhale. Scoop your right shoulder blade onto your back, inhale and lift up the left arm in a Side Plank. Either stay here or bring your left foot on top of your right to increase challenge on your balance. For the full variation of Vashistasana, grab your left big toe with index and middle finger of your left arm and extend the leg out towards the sky. Come back down on an exhale and repeat on the other side.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Chaturanga Dandasana Low Push Up - - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Low Push Up (Chaturanga Dandasana)

With your shoulders back above wrists, squeeze your whole body into one strong line (like a plank) and start lowering down onto elbow height on an exhale. Pause here for a moment before you come down all the way, lying on your belly.
Make sure to move your whole body as one single unit in this transition, not allowing your shoulders to fall forward. Hovering above the floor you should still see your elbow pit. If you feel like your hips are too heavy and you’re stressing your lower back here, take your knees down first and lower down in a Half Pushup (Ardha Chaturanga).

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Ardha Shalabasana Half Locust Pose - - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Half Locust Pose (Ardha Shalabasana)

Lying on your belly, pull your navel towards your spine and press your hip bones as well as your pubic bone into the ground. Inhale to lift your shoulders and your left leg. Exhale lift your right (opposite) arm, palm facing down, for a Half Locust (Ardha Shalabasana). Inhale bring the arm out in front of you with a strong paddle stroke, exhale bring it back and lower everything back to the ground. Next inhale second side: lift your heart and your right leg. Exhale the left arm. Inhale paddle, exhale come back. Repeat 6 times on each side, then take a little break with your forehead on the ground or on your folded hands, gently rocking your hips from side to side.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Shalabasana Full Locust Pose - - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Full Locust Pose (Shalabasana)

Once the muscles in your back relaxed a bit, you can go for the full Locust Pose. Start with the same firm foundation on the ground through hips and core, and lift your chest and arms up with an inhale, palms facing down. Exhale and take your legs up, powerfully extending them out through the toes, but keep your gluteus (or buttocks) relaxed. Stay here for a couple of breaths, or interlace your fingers and clasp the heels of your hands together to move even deeper into this backbend. Stay for 3 breaths in either variation, then slowly release back down.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Urdhva Mukha Svanasana Upward Facing Dog - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Upward Facing Dog (Urdhva Mukha Svanasana)

Place your palms next to your rib cage, wrist creases aligned with the short end of your mat and elbows at a 90 degree angle. Press the tops of your feet, especially the pinky toe nail into the ground. Inhale and push the floor away with your hands, lifting your chest, rolling your shoulders back down and out to the sides. Either stay here in Cobra Pose (Buhjangasana), or straighten your arms to lift your hips and legs off the floor in Upward Facing Dog (Urdhva Mukha Svanasana). Pull the heads of your shoulders towards your heels and squeeze the shoulders blades onto your back to let your heart shine out even brighter. To come out, either lower back down to your belly and come back to Downward Facing Dog through your knees, or pull the navel in towards the spine in Up Dog, lift your hips up high and roll back over your toes to Down Dog.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Lunge Anjaneyasana - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Lunge (Anjaneyasana)

From Downward Facing Dog, inhale and lift your right leg high towards the sky, hips squared, exhale bring your shoulders above your wrist and your knee towards your nose. Inhale lift the leg back up and repeat three times, before you step the right foot down next to the right toe.
Try to really touch knee and nose together and pause there for a moment (or even a breath if you’d like to intensify). This is great core strengthener and will build up lots of power for your take off.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - High Lunge Cresent Pose - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

High Lunge (Cresent Pose)

With your right foot next to your right thumb, press both feet into the ground (make sure they’re not in one line but still hip distance apart) and lift your upper body up to a High Lunge. Keep your right knee bent a lot (90 degrees if possible) and precisely above your ankle, pointing in the same direction as your toes. Straighten your left (back) leg as much as you can, pushing back through your left heel. Pull your left groin a little forward and up, so both hip points are squared in one line, facing forward. Lift your arms up in front of you on an inhale and circle them back down through the sides on an exhale. Repeat three times.
For an easier variation of this pose, take your back knee down (double the mat if this feels uncomfortable).

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - High Lunge Garuda Mudra - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

High Lunge Garuda Mudra

Still in your High Lunge (knee lifted or on the ground), straighten your arms out to the sides on an inhale and cross your elbows, left under right, on an exhale (and the other way around of course when you’re doing the second side: left leg in front, right elbow under left). Wrap your arms and hands around each other as much as they like for this Garudasana Variation or just draw them towards each other if they don’t wrap.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Salamba Sirsasana 2 Garuda Mudra Tripod Headstand Eagle Legs - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Salamba Sirsasana (Headstand)

If you don’t have a steady Tripod Headstand Practice yet or no wall to practice against, please move on to the next pose.

If you’re comfortable standing on your head in the open space or with support and have a wall close to you, then move your mat over to it before bringing your right heel down 90 degrees from High Lunge. Turn the front foot around on the heel as well, so you’re facing the long side of your mat in a Wide Legged Forward Fold (Prasarita Padottanasana). Place your hands shoulder-width apart between your legs and the crown of your head in the middle above your finger tips.
Again, don’t try this unless you know that you can practice this pose and transition safely!
If that is the case, slowly start lifting your legs up through the sides and maybe even wrap the right leg around the left one for an Eagle Legs Variation (reversing the legs when you come to the second side). Come out the same way you came in, turn both feet back to face the front of the mat and bend your right knee.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Uttanasana Foward Fold Shoulder Stretch - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Standing Forward Bend (Uttanasana)

Bring your finger tips down to the ground from High Lunge, shift your weight to your right foot and slowly start lifting your left leg off the ground. Take a moment to balance on one leg and maybe even take the finger tips off the floor and in front of your heart, before you step your left foot to meet the right on the front end of the mat, folding your upper body over your thighs in Standing Forward Bend (Uttanasana).
Bend your knees as much as you need to comfortably dangle from side to side for a couple of breaths and then lift half away on an inhale to clasp your hands behind your lower back again. Interlace your fingers the other way around that you normally do (the way that feels super weird), bend your elbows and pull your shoulder blades onto your back, exhale and fold back forward into this yummy shoulder stretch. Stay for 3 breaths, then elease.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Standing Half Bow Ardha Dhanurasana - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Standing Bow Pose (Ardha Dhanurasana Variation)

Lift your upper body half way on an inhale and straighten your right leg out behind you. Come on to your finger tips, bend the right leg and slowly extend your left arm out behind you to hold on to your ankle.
You can also grab your pants or use a strap if you can’t quite reach, or just keep extending the arm out to the back, the foot up to the sky. Try to lift up a little higher without tilting your pelvis sideways on every inhale, and release a bit on the exhale. Pulsate in Standing Bow like this for 3 breaths.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Urdhva Prasarita Eka Padasana Standing Splits - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Standing Splits (Urdhva Prasarita Eka Padasana)

Carefully release the foot and fold your upper body back over your standing leg while the other (right) leg continues to lift up towards the sky. Don’t worry about how high your legs goes but focus all your concentration on keeping your balance while maintaining a steady breath and take your left hand away from the ground to wrap it around your left calf.
If you’d like to add even more challenge here, take the right hand away from the floor as well and watch your foot calibrate to keep you grounded in Standing Splits.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Navasana Boat Pose - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Boat Pose (Navasana)

Bring the top leg back down on a exhale, bend both knees and through a squat come all th way down to your mat. Sit up tall with your legs straightened out in front of you. Keep your upper body, especially your lower back, straight and aligned, and lift your legs off the floor to balance on your sitting bones in Boat Bose (Navasana). Stay for 6 breaths, without letting your lower back round.
If you feel it does round or you feel any stress or tension in this area, bend your knees to bring your shins parallel to the floor for Half Boat or even hold your knees with your hands until you’ve built up enough core strength to hold yourself here without compromising alignment or compressing the lower back.
Bring your legs back down and cross them for a couple of relaxing breaths in a crossed legged seat like Easy Pose (Sukhasana) or any other way you feel benefits your right now. Let your breath (and thoughts) calm down again before placing your hands back on the mat to move back into Downward Facing Dog.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Dolphin Down Dog Variation - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Dolphin Down Dog

Back in Adho Mukha Svanasana, let both of your forearms sink down at the same time and rest them on your mat. Let the backside of your heart melt and your shoulder blades release with every exhale, bending your knees as much as you need to keep a bit of curve in your lower back. Stay for 6 breaths, then come back up to Downward Facing Dog.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Pincha Mayurasana Forearm Balance - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Feathered Peacock Pose (Pincha Mayurasana Forearm Balance)

To work on your balance even more, you can add a forearm balance here but if you’re not comfortable with inversions yet and/or don’t have a wall, you can leave this one out and continue with your sequence of Lunge, High Lunge, Standing Bow, Standing Splits and Navasana on the second (left) side.

If you feel ready to try Feathered Peacock Pose (Pincha Mayurasana), take your mat to a wall, bring your forearms back to the ground and take a block between your hands to keep them from sliding in towards each other. If you’re already a regular with this pose and able to hold your balance in the open space you can practice without a wall too,of course .
Where ever you are, walk your feet forward to bring your shoulders above your elbows and your hips above your shoulders as much as they will go. Extend one leg out behind you, keeping your hips square and the leg straight, and start hopping off the ground with your other leg. Once your straight leg has stacked on top of the other joints in your body, try to lift the other one up as well and balance on your forearms. This pose is not only great to open and train your shoulders but strengthens your whole core.
Rest in Childs Pose until your breath and pulse have calmed down, then come back to Downward Facing Dog, lift your left leg and continue the sequence (Lunge, High Lunge, Standing Bow, Standing Splits & Navasana) on the second side.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Purvottanasana Reversed Plank Pose - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Reversed Plank Pose (Purvottanasana)

After you’ve went through the sequence on your left side and finished your second round of Navasana, take a pause sitting in Dandasana with your legs straightened out in front of you.
Once your breath is back to normal, take your hands behind your hips, fingertips facing forward. Draw your shoulder blades onto your back, let your heart shine bright and lift your hips up with an inhale, toes pointing forward and down. Extend the back of your head down on an exhale and keep on breathing evenly.
If this version of Reversed Plank (Purvottanasana) feels a bit overwhelming and too much, go for the simpler Table Top variation with your knees bent at 90 degrees, ankles under knees.
You can add a couple of rounds of Lions Breath (Simhasana) to either variation. Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth, stick your tongue out and grimace the wildest ways you can imagine. Repeat until you feel there is no more tension left and everything that no longer serves you has been cleaned out of your system.
To come back out of both poses, draw your chin towards your chest on an inhale and lower back to the ground on an exhale.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Yoga for Surfers - Gomukh - Photo by Conny Marshaus, Yoga by Anna Kathalina Langer

Gomukhasana Arms

For a last seated shoulder stretch, come to sitting on your heels, on a block or pillow between your ankles, or come to any other seat that’s comfortable for you. Lift both arms up on an inhale and bring your right hand behind the back of your head on an exhale, palm facing your neck. Gently pull the right elbow in towards the middle of your skull with your left hand but make sure you don’t bend your neck doing so.
You can either stay here or extend the left arm out to the side on an inhale, turn the thumb to point towards the ground and rotate your left shoulder inwards to bring your left hand behind your back as well, palm facing away from you. Try to wiggle the left hand up on your back to meet your right or grab a bit from fabric from your t-shirt, your ponytail or take a strap into the top hand if you know you’re tight here. Stay with these Gomukhasana Arm Variation for 3-6 breaths, then change sides.

You can close this sequence by laying all the way down onto your back for deep relaxation in Savasana, or cross your legs for a seated meditation. Of course you’re also welcome to continue with some more poses or even an additional sequence, just make sure to take a couple of minutes to calm down, relax and integrate everything you’ve done before you continue on with your day.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~