Listen To Your Body

Have you been doing Joëlle Sleebos’s core exercises from the last issue? You should be feeling your abdominals getting stronger. Now it’s time to strengthen the other side of your core, your back.

This issue, I thought to give you the chance to continue your core workout by adding two more core exercises based on a combination of yoga poses. These two focus more specifically on your back muscles.

Among the different exercises and poses, you will notice a pose called “child’s pose” (Balasana). As you probably know, yoga is much more than a physical exercises regime. For many people it also becomes a mental and spiritual practice or disciple.

An aspect I love about yoga is that you learn to listen to the body. Some days you have lots of energy and you feel great, while other days you just don’t feel as energetic and strong. I absolutely love the fact that we can decide how we move, and yoga provides so many options to fit in with how you’re feeling on the day. Some days your practice will be strong and you will do all the advanced options, while other days you might just take it a little easier and do the less advanced options – that’s perfectly fine as long as you’re listening to your body.

While doing yoga you can always, whenever you want, come in to child’s pose. Child’s pose is a resting pose. You can hold it from 30 seconds to a few minutes.

Knowing when to take a rest during exercise, letting the body be your guide instead of your mind, your will, your (sometimes) stubbornness or whatever other external reason, is a beautiful thing to learn to do. It has taught me to adapt my practice according to my needs and to apply the same in my other daily activities. Check it out and it will hopefully help you connect more with your true self. It’s all about balance!

Sus Joëlle’s Yoga Training Plan

If you have enough time each time you do these yoga poses, try to do you Sun Salutation A from the June/July issue and the two exercises from the September issue. Just add on these two exercises to your workout. If you do this routine four times a week, you will feel the difference quickly!

If you struggle to do everything, try to do the Sun Salutation A and the exercises from the September issue twice a week and the Sun Salutation A with the exercises below, twice a week.

Click here to download a printable version of Joëlle’s Yoga Training Plan.

Balancing out your Core: Yoga Poses to Strengthen Your Back

Series 1

A)   Horse Pose

After warming up by doing Sun Salutation A start in the Horse Pose.



B)   Reach Right Arm forward


Inhale: Keep lower back flat, pull belly in.

Exhale & Hold pose: Keep your body still, use your core muscles, hold for 3-4 breaths.


C)   Reach Left Leg back


Inhale: Keep lower back flat, pull belly in.

Exhale & Hold pose: Keep your body still, use your core muscles, hold for 3-4 breaths.


D)   Stretch out arm and leg


Inhale: Reach arm & leg even further.


E)   Cross over


Exhale: Left Knee, Right elbow, Nose together underneath the body.


F)   Repeat poses D & E


Inhale & Exhale as you alternate between poses D & E 3-4 times.


G)   Horse Pose




H)   Chaturanga on knees




I)     Child’s pose




Series 2

A) On belly:

Start on your belly.



B) Superman/woman:


Inhale: Try to lengthen your arms, legs, fingers and toes as much as possible.

Exhale & Hold pose: Keep your body still, use your core muscles, and hold for 3-4 breaths.

Stretch further: Try to extend your fingers and toes further away from your core every time you inhale.


C) Parachute:


Exhale: Elbow pull back, slide shoulder-blades together, heels toward your buttocks, knees lift off the floor. Feel the whole back of your body engage


D) Repeat Poses B & C:


Inhale & Exhale as you alternate between poses B & C 3-4 times.


E) Child’s pose:



Remember to visit to book Yoga or Altitude Training classes to get into top shape for FNB Wines2Whales.


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