The winter weather is upon us, just take a peak out the window! Heading into the cooler weather its important to break that stiffness, and keep your body in check. We recently chatted with the team at Yoga Santosha! Here are the 5 Positions You Need To Break The Winter Stiffness! Happy bending!

(note if you haven’t done yoga before we recommend heading into the 4th street studio for some introduction classes!)

Garudasana: eagle pose with eagle arms. We think this is a very beneficial posture to take at this time of year when the cold tends to bring the shoulders up around the ears, and shoulders can get tight because of the all that shoveling that some people have to do… Other benefits include that it strengthens and stretches the thighs, ankles and calves. It also stretches the hips and upper back. Stand tall and bring your right leg up and over the left leg, crossing at the thigh, if possible, tuck the bottom foot around too. Balancing on the left foot. Bring your arms forward and cross them in front of you, placing the left arm inside the right one at the elbow. If the shoulders are too tight to bind the elbows and hands, there is the modification where you can have each hand cup the opposite shoulder with the elbows crossed in front.

Parsvottanasana: Intense side stretch pose. The benefits here are also for the shoulders when you bring the arms up off the back but the hamstrings get a lot of benefit here, as do the hips. Place the right foot forward first, slightly staggered with the back foot, and have them about a legs width apart. In this pose the arms will be behind the back with the fingers interlaced, take the arms off the back and lift them up to the sky.

Eka Pada Rajakapotasana: pigeon pose. We love this one at all times of year but in winter, our hips tend to get really tight with the cold, so it is a great time of year to be sure to practice it! There are other great benefits to this pose too… It stretches the thighs, psoas (hip flexors) and inner groin. It helps to balance the core and helps to calm the mind. From Downward Dog, bring your right knee forward toward the right wrist. Let the back leg reach straight back. Put a block under your right sit bone if it is lifting so that you are more easily squared forward. Walk the hands in toward you and maybe even up on to your legs or you can use blocks under the hands. You can also come all the way forward in this posture.

Uttanasana: Standing forward bend. This posture lengthens the spine, it increases flexibility and can reduce pain in the lower back. It helps to open tight shoulders as well, and has a great impact on organ health. Spread legs to hip width apart and fold forward at the hips, bend knees if you are experiencing discomfort in the low back. You can clasp the elbows here or hug behind the knees.

Supported Setu Bandha Sarvangasana: This a great posture to help fight the winter blues… It’s known to help relieve mild depression! This posture stretches the neck, the chest, and the spine. It helps to stimulate the abdominal organs, and improves digestion. Lie on your back, with bent knees, lift the hips up and slide a block at your desired height, under the sacrum.

Now that you’re ready to go! Why not give the gift of yoga this holiday season! Now it’s time to learn a little bit more about the team behind the name!

How long have you operated on 4th Street?

Candace: We have been on 4th St. for just over 8 years.

How did Yoga Santosha begin? What was the inspiration?

Candace: The inspiration behind opening Santosha was our passion for yoga and for community. We love people, sharing with them, inspiring them, and just being with them! To build a business that focuses on that, and health and wellness, is an incredible gift! We love to spend time with our family, with our children and we wanted a business that we could have them be a part of, somewhere that they too could be with an amazing group of people and feel comfortable

Tell us something we might not know about your Yoga Santosha?

Candace: We started out as a strictly Ashtanga Yoga studio! It has come a long way in regards to the variety of classes that we offer.

One fun fact.

Candace: It takes 60 staff members to keep Santosha running smoothly!

Wow! Thats a lot of people!! What you love most about 4th Street?

Candace: All of the great people and businesses that are on this street!

Your one guilty pleasure,of course?

Candace: I love dark chocolate!

And… I want to know, your favourite thing to do after a yoga class? Or something you recommend doing?

Candace: Going for a walk after class, in silence even better… Letting the yoga vibe sink in even deeper.

That’s amazing! To learn more about Yoga Santosha follow them socially on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!