Not all the health and aesthetic benefits of working out are earned after spending long hours doing physical activity. This is the case for Salma Hayek, who has admitted several times on social media that she is no fan of long, mandatory workouts or dieting. So, how has she kept her amazing figure over the years?
Genetics have undoubtedly been kind to her, but the Mexican actress has also made compromises and frequently does brief restorative or Hatha yoga sessions, which emphasize breathing, relaxation and the use of bolsters and props, according to an interview with People. It’s a very popular practice among yoga and fitness newbies.
This discipline will help you improve flexibility, strength and muscle tone, and is great for relieving stress. That’s why we’ve created this list of five poses that may help get you into this practice and reap all of its benefits, just like Salma.
So, create the ambiance… Head to your living room or a calm space and find some relaxing music—many streaming platforms have premade yoga playlists—a mat and a rectangular bolster (a pillow is a perfectly acceptable substitute). And remember that the key to this discipline is breathing: inhale and exhale slowly through your nose and try to always focus on your breaths.
Shavasana or corpse pose
Seek total relaxation by laying down on your back with your feet slightly separated. Let your heels rest on the floor and your feet fall slightly to either side. Your arms should be resting parallel to your torso with your palms facing up.
You should do this pose in front of a wall or chair. Lay down in front of a wall, lift your legs, and lean them against the wall. Your bolster or pillow should be under your hips. The idea is for it to keep your hips higher than your shoulders. Focus on your breathing. You don’t have to fully extend your legs. In fact, you should make sure not to overextend the knees. Inhale, exhale, and relax. This pose is said to rejuvenate and heal.
If you’re getting into bridge from the previous pose, simply move away from the wall and lay down again on the floor. Lay your arms next to your body. Remember to keep breathing slowly between each movement. Bend your knees and set your feet flat on the mat. They should be hip-width apart.
Lift your torso as much as possible while keeping your feet on the floor. If you need support, set a pillow or folded blanket under your shoulders. Try to move from your chest and not your pelvis. Take care not to put pressure on your neck. Stay in this pose for 15 seconds.
Navasana or boat pose
Next, sit up on your mat with your knees bent and your feet fully on the ground. Grab the back of your thighs a bit higher than your glutes and lean back slightly, as if you were about to lay back down.
Lift your legs with your knees bent until your calves are parallel to the floor. Next, lift and outstretch your arms. Hold them at shoulder height. Remember to keep breathing slowly; it will help you keep your balance.
Paschimottanasana or seated forward bend
Sitting with your legs together and straight in front of you, outstretch your arms and try to grab onto your feet. Stretch as far as you can without forcefully pulling yourself into a deeper stretch. Always keep your legs on the floor. The goal is to fully stretch out your back.
Ideally, you should take guided yoga classes at least the first few times you practice to learn how to do the poses correctly, but this is a short routine you can do at home that will help you stay in shape and relaxed like Salma Hayek.