Yoga for Core Strength & Flexibility | Abs & Core Workout for Women (Yoga Sculpt Series)


(tranquil piano music) – Hi, I’m Brett Larkin. Welcome to Yoga Sculpt:
Tone, Lengthen, Release. Our focus is on our core
and our deepest abs. I’ll see you on the mat. To begin, come on in
to downward-facing dog. Press back into your dog,
pedal through the legs. As always, when I come to dog, I just like to feel the
weight of the world, the weight of all my thoughts
just rippling off my back, melting into the floor as I bend one knee and then the other. Make sure the fingers
are spread super wide apart from one another. Make sure the knuckles
are pressing into the mat. And then take a moment, find stillness, spread the toes apart from one another, yearn the heels down. OK to have the knees deeply bent as well, pressing the chest in towards the thighs. Wherever you are, legs
bent, or legs straight, (inhaling) just close your eyes for a
moment, notice your breath. (inhaling) Drop in to a nice three-count inhale, (exhaling) three-count exhale. In through the nose,
exhaling nose or mouth, whichever feels best for you. Breathe in. Next in-breath you’ll just
ripple the spine forward, come in to your plank. Exhale, pull the navel up and back. Downward-facing dog. Good, two more like that. Inhale, rock forward to plank. (inhaling) Exhale, downward-facing dog,
warming up the shoulders. This time, inhale, plank, and we’ll hold. (inhaling) Stay here. Make any micro adjustments
you need to in the feet. Really yearn the inner
and outer heel back. Glide the shoulders down the back, and then zipper your front ribs up and in. Imagine my hand was on your low back; round your low back into my hand so your hips move in towards your chin, your wrists move towards your toes, your toes are energetically
moving towards your wrists. It’s like you want your mat
to bubble up in the center. Keep everything exactly the same. Just squeeze the inner thighs together. Knees dip and touch the mat, and come up. Make sure your toes are touching, thighs touching, seat squeezing. Slowly bend the knees, almost so they touch the
ground, and then straighten. Such a great way to fire up the abs any time of day, anywhere. Slowly bend and straighten. Look at how slowly I’m moving. So really try to make it slow and controlled instead of fast. Keep everything completely still and frozen except for the knees. Remember, heels are squeezing together, thighs are squeezing together. Let’s do four more. Good, cat-cow is our reward. Three more. You got it, two more. Last one, and hold. Stay here for me, hold. Imagine your low back
rounding into my hand. Keep the knees a micro inch off the floor. Last three, two, one. Awesome, drop the knees. Inhale, ripple up, up-cat. Woo! Awesome. Exhale, find your down-cat to round. Just drop into your breath. (inhaling) Ease yourself outta that. (exhaling) (inhaling) Good. We definitely wanna feel the fire but we don’t wanna be
aggressive with the body. (inhaling) Every time we tone, we
then get to release. Good. If you’re ready, press back into your downward-facing dog now. Extend through the legs once again. And you guessed it, as you breathe in, as you’re ready, no
rush, just walk forward, rock forward to your plank. Shoulders over wrists, hips over knees. Squeeze your seat together. So I want you to really clench the cheeks of your seat towards one another. Heels are touching; thighs are touching. Point your right toes off the mat. Imagine I’m pulling your
right toe behind you in space. Now take the right knee to the left elbow, and back to center, and
then to the opposite elbow, and back to center. Over to the left, center, and right, center. Three more. Three more rounds. (chuckling) That was one full round. Go slow. Keep the rest of the body
still; make that a priority. Last one. Good. And you’re gonna kick up
into your three-legged dog. Big release here. Allow yourself to bend
the knee, stack the hips. (exhaling) You can exhale out the mouth. (inhaling) (exhaling) Keep the knee moving away from
the body as you breathe in. (inhaling) And as you breathe out,
draw your knee to your nose. Little pulses here. Draw knee to nose, knee to nose,
knee to nose, knee to nose. Last six, five, four, three, everything else
is completely still, last one. Step the foot between the hands. This is gonna be the best
high lunge of your life. Inhale, reach up. Interlace the hands. Make a fist. Send the chest forward. So, usually in high lunge, I’m cuing you to pull the belly in. Today, we just did all that ab work, so just let the belly release, open the chest, greet your day. (exhaling) Huge breath in. (inhaling) (exhaling) Find where the cadence of
your breath is happening. After the next inhale, exhale. Hands part. Pull the arms down. You’re hovering at a 45-degree line. Keep the back leg stick straight, and now reengage the abs for me. Zipper the abs up and in. Crown of head long away from the heel. Find that 45-degree line,
heel to crown of head. We’re here for three, (inhaling) for two, last one. Exhale, hands frame the foot. Step it back. You can hold down-dog,
or you can rock forward, and flow through your plank,
your chaturanga push-up, or any modified version. It’s OK to just come all
the way to the floor, into cobra, whatever feels good to you. We’ll all meet, downward-facing dog. Find your breath, recapturing your breath in your down-dog, regrounding through the knuckles, making any little movements
you want in the feet. Good, and then bring the feet to touch. Toes touch, heels touch. Rock forward to your plank pose. Shoulders over wrists. Make any micro movements
you need with the feet to get them right where you want them. Shoulders over wrists. Knuckles press down. Abs hug up. Shh! Knit your front ribs together. Imagine you were wearing a corset that’s zippered around
the front of your body. Move your wrists towards your toes and your toes towards your wrists. This time we’ll point the
left toes off the floor. Extend your leg back. Nothing is moving; everything is still. You just sneak the knee
to the right elbow, and back, left elbow, and back. Do not rush it. Remember, you’re going
for length and tone, so you want to take it slow
and challenge yourself. If the whole body is shaking, that’s good. Good. We have three more rounds. Over to the right, and back. Over to the left, and back. Stay with me, right, back. Don’t rush it. Left, back. Last one, to the right,
and back, left, and back. Kick it up. Three-legged dog, hurray. Bend the knee, stack the hip. Huge breath in. (inhaling) Exhale, nose or mouth. (exhaling) Huge breath in. (inhaling) OK to stick the tongue out as you exhale. (exhaling forcefully) Try that wherever you are. Get the knee a little
farther away from the body, and then exhale, knee
to nose, little pulses. Little baby pulses in. Pull the knee towards the nose. Look how small my movement is. You can barely see I’m moving;
that’s what I want for you, just little pulses, little pulses. Here you go, last six, five, four, three, two, one. Into our high lunge. Set the foot down,
inhale, reach the arms up. Woo! Interlace the fingers, make that fist. Send the biceps back in space. Let the belly splay out. We usually don’t allow this,
but today I’m letting you. Just let the belly splay out. Huge breath. (inhaling) (exhaling) Find the cadence of where the inhale and exhale is happening. Get the pelvis lower to the ground. Inhale, open the heart. And then exhale, take the
hands apart from one another, and swoop them down by the hips. 45-degree line. We’re here for four breaths. Squeeze the inner thighs together. Line up the crown of
the head with your heel. Find your alignment,
inner and outer alignment, setting up for our day. Press the heel back. Keep the back thighbone engaged,
stick-straight for three, for two, last one. Awesome. Hands down to the mat. Press back to dog, or your choice to flow through chaturanga, any vinyasa variation, or skip it. (inhaling) (exhaling) We’ll all meet down-dog. No rush. Rock forward to your plank. Just two breaths here. Firm up the body, pull the abs in, for three, two, one. Drop the knees. Sit over to the left. Really good. From here, take your feet in front of you. So we’re coming in to a
seated ab exercise now. The setup of this is really important. Keep your arms parallel to the floor. Good. Keep the big toes pressing in to the mat, and then I want you to
imagine I punched you in the belly with a baseball bat. Not a fun visual, but
it’s really effective. You hollow out the belly. See how my navel pulls in, and then you’re rounding
in the low back a lot. Round into your low back. Now stay here, take the
heels closer to your seat. Oh, boy. Press the toes into the
mat, especially the big toe. Awesome. Now I want you to, from here, lift the arms up to 45 degrees. Good, make little fists. Pull your abs down and back, and take a little punch to the right, a little punch to the left. Little punches. Good, little punch
right, little punch left. Hopefully feeling a burn in the abs; if you’re not, round your low back more. So you’re really rounding the low back, really pressing your toes into the mat. Awesome. Last five, four, three, two, last one. Stay here, squeeze the seat, press the hands in to the thighs. Look down at your navel. I want you to feel your bellybutton moving away from your clothing
’cause it’s moving down. Press your hands in to your thighs. You’re here for eight counts. Just pressing hands in to thighs, rounding back, keep
your shoulders relaxed. You got it, last six, last four, three, two, one. Awesome. Reach forward. Let yourself round all the way down. Take your hands underneath your seat. So, fingers wide, little
bridge for your seat. Inhale, reach the legs straight up. Good, form here, you’re just
gonna make little crisscrosses. So just crossing at the ankles, lowering the feet, to
hover above the floor, make sure the low back
doesn’t come up off the floor, and then crisscross them up to the sky. Perfect. So you’re crisscrossing down, and then crisscross up to the sky. Notice where that point is
that feels really interesting for you, where the abs really
fire up and it feels hard. It’s usually about
three-quarters of the way down. Keep your little crisscrosses. Again, this is all about
finding your own inner strength and length, so once you notice that spot, the next time you’re
there, I want you to stay, press the heels together, point the feet, and just stay in that burny spot for you. Stay in that burn. Stay in the burny spot. We’re just here for eight counts. Lengthen your tailbone
down, pull your abs back. Last five, last four. Feel the whole body shake. Feet are pointed, seat is
squeezing, thighs are squeezing, heels are squeezing,
everything is squeezing. Last two, last one. Bring the knees in to the chest, hug them in, just a tiny break, and then take the legs
into a tabletop position so your knees are directly over
your hips, toes are pointed. Take the hands behind
the nape of the neck, so right where your
hairline meets your neck, and then inhale, come on up. Super-slow bicycle. You’re gonna lengthen the left leg, take the left elbow to the
right knee, and slowly switch. So bring the knees to touch, and then over to the other side. So we’re not rushing. We’re going for feeling,
not burn, in the abs. Really pull the upper body off the mat. So find your own peace. Don’t let me rush you. And if you’re going super
fast, make yourself stop. It’s way harder to go slow. It’s what nobody tells you. We’ll do three more each side. And that’s it, then you’re done. Good, last two more, each side. Good. Here you go, stay with it, last one. Good, and one. Good, and then just hold the
knees directly over the thighs, press your hands onto the thighs again, round the upper body up. We’re just holding here. Press the hands in to the thighs so much. Make sure the knees are
directly over the hips, that they’re not closer in to the body, that you’re not cheating. Last eight, seven, six,
five, four, three, two, one. Pull the knees in to the chest. Rock and roll on the spine. Come on in to your downward-facing dog. We’re gonna finish with
the most yummy thing. This is how I always like to reward myself after I do a lot of great
core-strengthening exercises. I like to just feel my abs
stretch by doing a rolling dog. So look at me for this first one. What I do is I draw my
chin in to my chest. I imagine that there’s a string
between my shoulder blades, and that string is leading me forward. So I’m coming into plank
through a really rounded spine, and then I pull my abs up and in, I let my hips drop to the floor, and then I come into up-dog
with my toes curled under. See how my toes are still curled under? Perfect. And then I press the floor away, and I take it back into
downward-facing dog. So now that you’ve seen it, we’ll do three together,
and you can try it. On the last one, we’ll hang out in up-dog, and really let the abs release. Chin in to chest. Think the space between
your shoulder blades is what’s moving forward first. The hips are the very
last thing to come down. And then open into your up-dog. Maybe look up, if it’s the
morning, just greet your day. Roll it back. Good. Last two, keeping these slow as well. Imagine the air around you is thick; it’s like you’re moving
through honey or water. Take a moment on the up-dog, look up. Good. Take it back. Last one. This time we’ll hang out
in our up-dog together. Chin in to chest. Space between the shoulder
blades moves forward first. Take it really slow. Here we are in our up-dog
with the toes curled under. Just let the body now
sway from side to side. Feel it opening, hopefully,
across the abdominals. Really send your breath into your low abs, into the whole space of the belly. Keep pressing the shoulders down. Let the belly open and
release a little more. Last three, two, last one. Come into your child’s pose. Forehead to the mat. Index fingers touch. Elbows wide. Breathe into your low back. (inhaling) (exhaling) Fill it up with air. And then slowly press
yourself up to a seat. We’ll take a nice stretch. So I always like to do
something really expansive after all the contraction of the abs, so I’m gonna take my legs
wide for a forward fold. If this is too much for
you or just too intense, you’re welcome to keep the
soles of the feet touching. You can always prop
yourself up on bolsters or pillows that you have at home to make all of this
more accessible for you. Really actively flex the feet. Make sure that you’re
pressing the thighbones down. It’s like my heels wanna lift off the mat. And then inhale, get tall. (inhaling) Exhale, fold forward. (exhaling) You can come onto the forearms, or place your head on
a block or the floor. (inhaling) (exhaling) Send all the energy and the heat that you cultivated throughout this class into the stretch now. Last three breaths. Good. Gently press yourself up. Wherever you are, just come into your comfortable meditation seat now. Any adjustments you need. For today, we’ll take the hands face-up, backs of the hands on the knees, index finger and thumb touch. Full two minutes of just silence, breathing in to your inner alignment. Feel the heat you’ve created in the body. Align your shoulders right over your hips, the crown of your head
directly over your sits bones, maybe leaning back, chin
parallel to the floor. (calm uplifting music) See yourself here happy, laughing, just visualizing a moment of pure joy, maybe from your past, maybe something funny
that happened recently. Just call that memory into your heart. Let it play on the screen of your mind. (calm uplifting music) Slowly draw your right
hand over your heart. Press the palm in to the chest. Take the left hand on top of the right, just fusing that joyful energy into you, to carry with you off the mat as you either begin or end your day. Gently look down, dip the chin, and open the eyes as you’re ready. Thank you so much for practicing with me. And from my heart to yours, namaste. I really wanna hear how
this class went for you. Be sure to leave a comment down below. Let me know. Like the series if you’ve enjoyed it. And so much love from my heart to yours. Namaste. (tranquil piano music)

100 Replies to “Yoga for Core Strength & Flexibility | Abs & Core Workout for Women (Yoga Sculpt Series)”

  1. I love the whole yoga sculpt series! Who would know that 20 minutes could be spent that effective…? Thanks! πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰

  2. Wow-this was intense and I'm sure I'll be feeling it tomorrow, just as I did the seat sculpt video.

    I do have a question-I have never had an issue with my wrists before but with all the down dog and planks I was having trouble wiht pain in my wrists. Any suggestions about what to do when that occurs?

  3. Woo my arms were burning, after reading Angie's comment; glad Im not the only one. Thank you for your flows. I've given up weight training for yoga since subscribing to your channel. Thank you! A very relaxing but amazing workout.

  4. Hi Brett, I am new to your classes but from all the ones that I discovered so far you are by fare the best teacher.
    I really enjoy the diversity of your classes, your teaching and your person and if I have any recommendations you will surely hear from me. Thank you so much and namaste :-*

  5. Thank you so much! I'm so glad I found your channel, had an amazing workout and a great time! Greetings from Peru β™‘

  6. Loved this. I'm going to have to revisit this one until I can do all the moves. It was killer for me! Especially the plank moves. But I'm proud of myself for finishing even though I took breaks πŸ˜‰

  7. I did this one this morning. It made me angry because my body was having a tough time with it and my wrists were hurting, but my anger isn't necessarily a bad thing. On another day I will love it. Sometimes the workouts that make me angry are my favorite ones because I like the challenge (if I'm complaining it's hard, I'm often loving it simultaneously). Today, I sat out in child's pose a few times, just as I would in a yoga studio. Not being in a studio, I was free to whine and swear out loud. πŸ™‚

  8. I really wanted to continue with this challenge series so since I was working away from home and in a hotel , I tried this one on the bed! It was more arm intensive, but def still felt my abs. 😊. Thank you Miss Brett. Much appreciated.

  9. This was a tough one for me today! I felt it more in my wrists and forearms, but definitely still a great workout. Thanks Brett!

  10. love your videos in general, but especially ones like these for abs because while they sound intense (sculpt the core), the way you do it never makes it impossible which is encouraging and very motivating to get back on the mat.

  11. you always challenge .. sometimes i pass right by your videos and i ask myself whats going to make me stronger and challenge my abilities. i always turn to your videos. . great work …

  12. ur awesome. you talk thru the exercises like it's nothing. πŸ™‚ thanks for the vid it's a good one

  13. I love this routine! I am intentionally strengthening my core after four babies in six years and after one time through, I already feel some of my former strength returning. Thank you for making flexibility and strength accessible for us time-crunched moms!

  14. Wrists can't handle it! which also makes the stretch out a little difficult. Otherwise, loving this series…Going to keep trying it, or leaving out the most painful wrist parts.

  15. πŸ˜€ Hard but really satisfying and enjoyable! I did it just after your detox challenge #3. Now, I feel a (peaceful) warrior πŸ’ͺ🏻😊 thanks a lot Brett!

  16. That was a really intense class. The first part was really hard on my upper arms and I ended up needing to taking a tiny pause but I got back into it. Thank you!

  17. I liked it so much! It was pretty tough at some points, but this is the challenge I just need. I love your practices because your voice is so joyful and encouraging. Please keep on making these videos and being so cheerful. πŸ™‚

  18. As always, fantastic class. I am amazed at how more intense things get as I practice yoga daily now. My focus seems to be getting much better which helps with hanging in when it gets really challenging. Thank you Brett. You are an inspiration. Namaste!

  19. I had never sweat as much as I did while doing this practice! Thank you thank you thank you for your energy and your time πŸ’– Namaste.

  20. Great ab workout. Very challenging and effective. I definitely felt a burn in my abs. I noticed at the end doing up dog I had a little tweak in my lower left back which I worked on yesterday with one of your back relief practices so I will do that one again next. I really helped relax my back. Always love your classes. Thank you Brett. Namaste!!!

  21. Great workout Brett! I’m 8 weeks postpartum and it feels so nice to get back on the mat again and get some sculpting in while sweet baby sleeps! I did modify a bit (my body’s not yet back to pre-baby shape) I love your channel! Thank you!

  22. That was challenging today. And I became very emotional after the meditation as my hands held my heart. Thank you, bret. Namaste πŸ’š

  23. Hi. I am a mother of 6 and after I gave birth to my 5th child, it seems impossible to flatten back my mommy tummy 😒 Can this video help with flatten my tummy or can you recommend any yoga video? TQ

  24. Yay – I just discovered this to be a full series! How great is that! I started out with the thigh work out yesterday, and oh boy, it was effective. This one was also incredibly effective, and again, your instructions are so on time when you encourage me to stay with it just as I am wondering how long I can keep a posture. Really enjoy following you here. Thank you so much for your work out videos, they are really high quality all the way.

  25. I love your approach Brett. Thank you so much for the gift of these sessions. @retreatmd β€οΈπŸ™πŸ»

  26. I did this very well, except I had to make a lower plank variation my leaning my forearms against the yoga blocks because I have had several wrist injuries when I was a child, and at 31, I still feel it after a while, so I always remind my self to "take a break" or "use a variation" so that I don't end up damaging my wrists, as I really need them. LOL! but it was an awesome workout, as usual.
    Thank you so much for these videos, Brett. You're my all time favourite Yoga teacher on and off of YouTube.

  27. I must have insanely weak shoulders because they burned just as much, if not sometimes even more than my core. Thank you for a great class!

  28. Oh man! This is a great core routine. It reminds me a little of the headstand class that I do from your 18 days of yoga for your body and soul! Now I'm curious about this series!

  29. Wasn’t ready for this πŸ˜† but did it πŸ‘πŸΌ Hands/wrists hurt during a bit. The music at the end when we were to sit in a 2 min silence threw me off a bit. Other than that ☺️ another GREAT one πŸ˜ƒ.

  30. Super nice balance of challenge and easy organic movement and bliss – at the end ! Love the little meditation , thank you <3

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