A simple seated twist is an excellent way to ignite your digestive fire.

Before you stuff your face with turkey and cranberry sauce, take a couple of seated twists.

Below is a list of How-Tos for a few variations of seated twists.

If you are pregnant or nursing, please only do variation 1 and consult a physician before adding this to your exercise routine.

Variation 1: Find a comfortable cross-legged seated position or sit in a chair with your knees parallel with the hip joints and the ankles aligned beneath the knees. Sit with a tall spine lifting your chest and releasing your shoulders down the back.

On an exhale, place your right hand in front of you and the left hand behind you a bit or a little to the side of you. Draw your left armpit as close to your spine as you can leading the movement with your gaze as you look over your shoulder. (If you are sitting in chair, place your right hand on your your left thigh or on your right thigh if crossing your arm is too intense.)

This twist comes from up high in the back and is not very deep. We are going for quality not quantity! Stay here for five breaths, and on an inhale, you can bring yourself forward. Then, repeat on the opposite side.

Variation 2: Perform Variation 1 and hold for two or three breaths. From here, you can take your right hand and place it on your left knee making sure to not clinch your fingers around your knee, but instead, spread your fingers, and turn your palm away resting the back of your hand on your knee. This creates a deeper twist without force. Stay here for five breaths, and on an inhale, you can untwist yourself make your way to the center, and begin again on the other side.

Variation 3: Perform Variations 1 & 2 and hold for two or three breaths. If you have more space available in the twist, you can continue to move deeper into the twist by bringing the back of your hand to the small of your back while twisting.

If your shoulder is by your ear, return to variation 1 or 2. Stay in this deeper twist for five breaths, and then return to center. There are many other variations of twists in yoga, but these three are very simple and can be done just about anywhere.

I suggestion doing Tip 1 and Tip 2 before your Thanksgiving dinner (preferably in the morning before you consume anything).

Performing a twist on a full stomach is NOT A GOOD IDEA!

You’ll feel gross. Trust me. Gross. So perform Tips 1 and 2 on an empty stomach to start your day of feast with a digestive system that is ready to work for you, not against you!

If you missed Tip 1, Click Here!

As always, never start a new exercise routine without consulting your physician.

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