Today's pose is a basic and gentle twist. The pose in the picture demonstrates the pose to it's fullest. I will list a few variations so you can be sure to find comfort here and be able to sit with it and stay for a few breaths.
First let's list a few physical and mental benefits: Stretches the hips, knees, and ankles. It increases flexibility throughout the spine, shoulders, and chest. It also helps to reduce stress and anxiety. Twisting stimulates and tones your abdominal organs, including the kidneys and digestive organs. This helps with detoxification, which boosts energy and improves your overall health.
Step 1: Sit in a comfortable cross leg seated position. If it's uncomfortable fold some blankets/a bolster or perhaps a block and sit on. This will raise you a little higher and take some pressure off the hips. Remember if it's uncomfortable, that is completely normal and ok. The more you do this, the more comfortable it feels. You can always practice in a seated position on a chair as well.
Step 2: Balance your weight evenly through your “sits bones” also known as your ischial tuberosities in your pelvis. Ideally, when we sit up straight, we balance on them, but poor posture can lead to significant curvature of the lower back and we send our weight, literally, to other areas. Sit up straighter, pull back the flesh from the underside of your seat, tip your pelvis forward and try to connect your protrusions with your mat, letting them support you.
Step 3: Align your head, neck, and spine. As you take an inhale, lengthen your spine, but soften your neck. Relax your feet and thighs.
Step 4: Place your right hand on the floor behind you. Bring your left hand to the outside of your right knee, exhaling as you gently twist to the right. Inhale again as you lengthen your spine, and exhale as you twist deeper. Gaze over your right shoulder only if it feels good to the neck, otherwise keep the head in line with the collar bones. Do not push hard against your knee to force a deeper twist.
Hold for about 10 breaths on each side and just sit with that. When moving to the other side change the cross of your legs.