Here's how you can sneak it into your daily life!
Contrary to popular belief, yoga can be practiced without a yoga studio or even a yoga mat. In fact, it's absolutely possible to practice yoga without anyone knowing. Here's how you can sneak it into your daily life!

Yoga is an over five thousand-year old Indian philosophy that combines asana (yoga poses), breathing (pranayama), diet, and meditation. I believe that all of us have the ability to connect to yoga in one way or another, even as busy parents!

My home yoga practice isn't complete unless my son is crawling all over me. This new "twist" to my yoga flow has actually improved my balance and tested my ability to stay connected to my breath. While I don't practice asana as much as I used to since becoming a mother, I still make it a priority. After awakening to the fact that yoga is much more than asana (yoga poses), I have been able to create a daily practice.

Ideas for adding Yoga into your Day:

1. Use playtime to explore and play with your practice too!


Playtime with the kiddos is a wonderful chance to play with a yoga pose or two. Poses that are low to the ground work best (child level) and allow you to work on building balance, flexibility, and strength. I practice a few yoga poses while acting out dinosaur adventures with my son and hold yoga poses while reading him stories. Here are a few of my favorite postures to take:
  • Malasana: (Pictured). Malasana is a squat with lots of benefits (digestion, abdominal toner....). To take the pose, stand with your feet slightly wider than hip distance apart, toes turned out. Mindfully, lower your body into a "froggy" squat. Place a blanket or rolled mat under your heels if they do not touch the floor. Stay lifted in the pose by imagining reaching your head up to the sky. Keep your fingertips on the floor for balance or bring your hands to heart center (as pictured). Tip: If your balance is not quite there yet, even with fingers on the Earth, feel free to practice against a wall!
  • Baddha Konasana (Butterfly): Sit on the floor with the soles of your feet pressing together. Take hold of your feet grasping just above your ankles. Stay lifted in the pose by imagining shining your heart up to the sky.

Related: 5 Resources to Help your Child Practice Yoga

2. Find a Strong Tadasana, Anywhere!

Tadasana, or mountain pose, is the foundation for all standing yoga postures. A strong mountain pose improves posture and will help you cultivate full body awareness in your daily movements and in your yoga practice. One wonderful thing about tadasana, is you can discreetly practice anywhere! Standing in line at the store is one of my favorite times to explore this pose.

How to Practice:
  1. Stand with your feet hip distance apart (if you have been practicing a while, stand with your feet together).
  2. Spread awareness through all four corners of your feet by grounding them into the earth.
  3. Tighten your thigh muscles (quadriceps). Your knees should be facing forward.
  4. Gently lift the area bellow your belly button to your heart (avoid overly sucking in your stomach, this prevents your breathe from flowing).
  5. Roll your shoulders back.
  6. Feel your shoulder blades sliding down your back.
  7. Soften your eyes.
  8. Relax your jaw.
  9. Don't forget to breathe!
3. Try Alternate-Nostril Breathing


Alternate nostril breathing, or Nadi Shodhana, is a form of pranayama. Nadi means "channel" and shodhana means to "purify." We have one nadi that ends in our left nostril, and another that ends in our right. We tend to favor breathing through either the left or right nostril, which can lead to imbalance, or a dominant energy flowing in our body (breathing through the left nostril is a cooling and calm energy and breathing through the right nostril is a warming, active energy).

Alternate nostril breathing is a fantastic way to create a moment of zen when parenting gets a little hectic (and it always does!). The practice purifies and balances the energy between our nostrils (and nervous system), calming our mind and body. Added bonus, your children may be intrigued by what you are doing inviting a lighter mood as well (my son and his meditation teddy bear practice with me!).

To practice, follow these steps:
  1. First, blow your nose!
  2. Sit in an upright comfortable position.
  3. Place your index and middle finger (on your right hand) lightly on the base of your thumb. This frees your thumb and ring finger to do the work. You can join your pinkie finger to meet the ring finger.
  4. Lightly place your thumb on right side of your nose and lightly place your ring finger on the left side of your nose.
  5. Use your thumb to gently close the right nostril and inhale fully through the left nostril.
  6. When your lungs are full, pause for a moment, close the left nostril with your ring finger, then open the right nostril and let out a big exhale.
  7. Following the rhythm of your own breathe, continue the practice at least two full rounds, perhaps more if time and your children permit!
Tip: At first, you may need to omit the pause between breathing through the right and left nostril--it takes practice!

4. Make a Mudra

Mudras are hand gestures that move energy throughout the body. Certain mudras have specific effects on the mind and body. In other words, "there's a mudra for that!" One of the most well-known mudras is the Anjali mudra (hands to heart center as pictured above). This mudra creates a feeling of calm and inner peace, and can be used to center yourself often throughout the day. You can read more about mudras here.

5. Restore and Relax


Unwind after a busy day with legs up the wall. Legs up the wall provides wonderful support for the nervous and circulatory systems. This pose leaves my legs feeling refreshed and I often find myself here before going to bed. To get into the pose, sit facing the wall and bring the bottom of your hips right next to it.

Lay back, lift your legs, and let your heels rest on the wall. Let your body soften into the Earth and close your eyes. Rest here for a few breaths, perhaps adding in a little meditation or moment of gratitude for the happenings of your day.

Photo Credits: Lindley Battle Photography