8 best yoga stretches to boost flexibility for beginners

There’s a vast distinction between being flexible and being stiff as a board.

The difference?


Yoga is all about stretching your body, opening up your possibilities, and letting you choose the path to flexibility.

Starting a yoga journey can feel intimidating, but don’t worry.

I’m here to guide you through the best beginner-friendly stretches that will boost your flexibility in no time.

In this guide, I’ll be sharing eight yoga stretches perfect for beginners like you.

1) Child’s pose

Let’s start with the basics.

Child’s pose is a calming yoga stretch that’s perfect for beginners.


Because it’s simple, relaxing, and a great way to stretch your back and hips.

Most yoga sessions start with this pose to help set the pace for what’s coming next.

And it’s not just because it’s easy.

Child’s pose helps to release tension in your back, shoulders, and chest.

It also promotes flexibility by gently stretching your hips, thighs, and ankles.

So if you’re looking for a starting point in your yoga journey, child’s pose is an excellent choice.

Just remember, there’s no rush.

Take your time sinking into the pose and feel every muscle in your body starting to relax.

But remember to listen to your body.

If something doesn’t feel right, adjust your position or move on to the next pose.

2) Downward dog

Downward Dog was one of the first poses I ever attempted when I started practicing yoga.

At first, it felt like a challenge.

My arms would shake, my heels wouldn’t touch the ground, and within seconds, I’d feel out of breath.

It seemed like everyone else could hold the pose with ease while I struggled.

But here’s the thing about yoga, it’s not a competition.

And Downward Dog, despite being a beginner’s pose, needs practice and patience.

As I continued to include it in my daily routine, I noticed how it gradually became less strenuous.

And as my body got accustomed to the stretch, I started feeling the benefits.

It’s a great all-over body stretch – targeting your back, shoulders, hamstrings, and calves all at once.

It also strengthens your arms and legs.

3) Mountain pose

Mountain pose, or Tadasana, may look like just standing.

But there’s a lot more to it.

This pose forms the foundation for all other standing yoga poses.

It’s all about alignment and grounding yourself.

While performing Mountain Pose, you’re actively engaging your muscles, aligning your body from head to toe, and focusing on your breath.

It might surprise you to know that Tadasana is often used in mindfulness practices.

The reason?

It helps you feel connected to the earth, enhancing your balance and stability.

It’s this combination of physical alignment and mental focus that makes Mountain Pose such an integral part of yoga.

And as a beginner, mastering this pose will give you a solid base to progress into more complex poses.

4) Warrior I

This is a staple in most yoga sequences and for a good reason.

Warrior I is an excellent pose for beginners because it strengthens and stretches the legs, opens the hips and chest, and improves balance and concentration.

To get into the pose, you step one foot back, bend your front knee, lift your arms overhead, and gaze forward.

It may take some time to feel comfortable in this pose, but remember, practice makes perfect.

This pose is named after a mythical warrior, Virabhadra.

The story goes that he was a fierce fighter with a thousand arms and flaming hair.

This might be a bit more dramatic than your yoga practice, but channeling the strength of Virabhadra can help you feel grounded and powerful in your Warrior I pose.

Remember to keep breathing and to adjust the pose to suit your body.

After all, yoga is about feeling good in your skin, not about achieving perfect form.

5) Tree pose

If you’re looking to improve your balance and coordination, tree pose is the stretch for you.

Known as Vriksasana in Sanskrit, tree pose requires you to stand on one foot while resting the other foot on your standing leg.

You can place it on your ankle, calf, or thigh – just avoid your knee.

Personally, I found that focusing on a fixed point in front of me helped me maintain my balance.

But don’t worry if you wobble or even fall out of the pose – it’s all part of the process.

Tree pose not only improves your balance but also strengthens your ankles, calves, and thighs.

It also opens up your hips and stretches your shoulders and chest.

6) Seated forward bend

Sometimes, the simplest poses can make the biggest impact.

That’s certainly the case with the Seated Forward Bend or Paschimottanasana.

Sitting on the floor, legs stretched out in front of you, and bending forward from your waist might sound straightforward.

But this pose is a deep stretch that can be quite challenging for beginners.

It stretches your hamstrings and lower back, helping to improve flexibility and calm your mind.

It’s a gentle reminder that yoga isn’t always about pushing your body to its limits, but also about finding peace and tranquility within yourself.

As beginners, we might not be able to touch our toes or rest our head on our knees, and that’s perfectly okay.

7) Bridge pose

Bridge pose, or Setu Bandhasana, was a game changer for me.

Initially, I found it quite challenging.

Lying on my back, lifting my hips, and trying to keep my knees from splaying out felt like a lot to handle.

But with time, I started noticing how this pose helped me. It was like an antidote to long days spent sitting at a desk. It relieved the tension in my back and hips, stretched my chest and shoulders, and even helped with my posture.

The more I practiced it, the more I realized its benefits weren’t just physical.

On tough days when stress levels were high, Bridge pose became my go-to.

Something about lifting your hips towards the sky while keeping your feet grounded brings a sense of balance and calmness.

8) Corpse pose

Don’t be fooled by the name, Corpse pose, or Savasana, is far from a break.

It’s an essential part of any yoga practice.

It involves lying flat on your back, arms and legs relaxed, eyes closed, and breathing deeply.

Though it might seem like you’re just lying down, Savasana is a pose of total relaxation.

It’s usually performed at the end of a yoga session, allowing your body to absorb the benefits of your practice.

It gives you a moment of stillness to connect with your breath and let go of any tension.

Although it seems simple, many find this pose challenging because it requires you to stay fully present and aware.

But with time, it can become a sanctuary, a few moments of complete peace in your day.

The journey within

Yoga is more than just a physical workout.

It’s a journey of self-discovery, self-love, and self-improvement.

While the poses and stretches we’ve discussed will undoubtedly enhance your flexibility, remember, the true essence of yoga lies beyond the physical realm.

Yoga is about finding balance and harmony within oneself.

It’s about cultivating mindfulness, embracing stillness, and acknowledging the strength within you.

The ancient sage Patanjali, often known as the father of modern yoga, once said, “Yoga is the stilling of the fluctuations of the mind.”

So as you embark on your yoga journey with these beginner-friendly stretches, remember to tune in to your inner self.

Listen to your body, respect its boundaries, and let your breath guide you.

Whether you’re in Child’s pose or balancing in Tree pose, remember that each stretch is a step towards greater self-awareness and inner peace.

So breathe in.

Breathe out.

And let your yoga journey unfold at its own pace.

You are exactly where you need to be.

Dania Aziz

Dania Aziz

"A spirited lifestyle and love advocate, who loves to explore the two to help herself and others discover what they are really searching for."

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