“Backbends improve mood by expanding and uplifting the energy and shifting the nervous system,” explains yoga expert Beth Shaw, founder and president of YogaFit. “Forward folds are relaxing and cooling. Hip stretches release emotions and stress from the body, and twists detoxify and tone the digestive system.”
Just be sure to warm-up first. This Moon Flowers pose will get your heart rate going: Stand with your feet three to four feet apart and extend the arms to the sky. Bend your knees and bring the elbows towards the ribs with your fingers pointing towards the sky. Repeat 10 to 20 times.
Now you’re warmed up—and ready to go from glum to gleeful with these four yoga moves.