Yoga Poses for Journaling

For years I have had a daily practice of journaling, particularly my morning pages.  Julia Cameron, author of The Artist Way, encourages people to free form write each day.   The Artist Way focuses on techniques to help individuals increase their creativity, but this exercise would be beneficial for everyone. Oftentimes I therefore do yoga poses for journaling, which I time.  In eighteen minutes, I craft my morning pages and have allowed my body to wake up in several yin postures.  With regards to time, at the maximum I would hold each posture for six minutes each.  Feel free to break up the time to your discretion that works for you. 

Below are several postures that I encourage people to do yoga poses in.  Don’t worry all poses are on the ground.  Hold these poses held in a yin manner, which is an extended amount of time. Generally this is at least one minute up to six or seven minutes. Therefore you do not have to worry about spinal alignment as you journal.   Allow the body to release into the pose.  Find your first edge.  There may be tension or a sore sensation, but there should not be pain.  If there is back off, use a prop, or switch to a different pose.  These poses are wonderful to do while traveling as well, as they do not take up much space.  Enjoy the sweetness of yoga and journaling at the same time!

Bound Angle Pose (Badha Konasana)

            In this posture your feet are together, and knees apart.  Sometimes in a yoga class, a teacher may encourage you to touch your feet and open them like pages of a book.  Be curious about that book.  Allow the body to fold forward.  There are variations of this posture where your feet are closer towards your hips or your feet are further away in a diamond shape.  See what works for you. 

Easy Pose (Sukhasana)

            As children we may have actually done this pose in a classroom, criss cross applesauce. Seated on the ground place one foot in front of the other. It is a comfortable position that is natural to us.   Fold forward and begin writing.  Note what leg is in front, time it, then switch.  

Square Pose (Agnistambhasana)

            This is a more advanced posture of the pose above (easy pose).  In this pose, instead of having one leg in front it is on top of the other leg.  Each knee is aligned with an ankle. Ideally, there is not too much space between the thighs as they are aligned.  If this is too difficult, stick with sukhasana.  

Pigeon Pose (Utthita Eka Pada  Kapotasana)

            Pigeon pose is many people’s favorite pose in yoga class.  Place the front leg is aligned parallel to the top of your yoga mat.  If this is too intense, particularly at this time in the morning, feel free to bring the front foot closer to the midline or sit on a block or cushion.  The other leg is outstretched behind you.  Repeat to the other side. 

Seated Angle (Upavistha Konasana)

            This pose may be intense depending on flexibility, and for some people you may need pillows under your knees.  Legs are wide and straight, allow the body to fold forward.  It does not matter how low you go, remember you are journaling in this.

Sphinx Pose

            Lay on your belly. Stretch your legs behind you. Forearms are on the ground.   Write.  This may be a posture you are familiar with.  You have seen this pose during the summer time, while laying on the beach, reading a book, and wanting to tan your backside.  

Seated Head to Knee (Janu Sirsasana)

            In this posture one leg is outstretched forward, the other knee is bent and foot goes to your inner thigh.  Fold over the outstretched leg. 

Child’s Pose (Balasana)

            This is another popular pose, with two variations.  Toes touching, knees are either together or apart as you fold forward.  You are almost in a little ball comforting yourself as you write. 

Developing Discipline

            I hope you enjoyed these yoga poses for journaling.  You may find you already do these poses when you journal or read at home.  Yoga does not have to be complicated or “woowoo.”  Many of the poses come natural to us, even as children.  Yet as we get older and write, we allow ourselves to get fixated in sitting in the same type of positions, particularly when working on a computer all day.  Start your morning off right by pairing your morning pages with yoga, I even include my cup of tea during this process.  Many people find it difficult to incorporate yoga into their everyday lives, and if you already journal this is one way to combine it with something that is already part of your routine.  This ensures we are more likely to follow through with our discipline. 

For more descriptions and images of some of these postures, check out this blog:

If you are thinking of going on a pilgrimage, check out this post

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