The pose: Virabhadrasana I Variation, aka High Lunge
How to do it: Starting in downward facing dog, inhale to sweep your right leg out behind you, and start to push through the heel of the lifted foot to activate the quads and glutes. As you exhale, draw your right thigh towards your chest and place the right foot down next to the right palm. Use your next inhale to sweep your palms up above your head. Soften the back knee so you can lengthen your tailbone towards your right heel, and keep the right knee tracking inline with the right ankle. Keep the core active and draw your lower two ribs together to keep the lower back supported.
The pose: Utkatasana, aka Chair Pose
How to do it: Starting in Mountain Pose (Tadasana), inhale and bend your knees, sinking your hips towards your heels and sweeping your arms up overhead. Slightly tuck your tailbone to lengthen the lumbar spine and engage your inner thighs. Keep your neck in line with the spine to keep the back extended. To really challenge yourself, try lifting all 10 toes. If you have a sensitive lower back, step your feet hip-width apart.
The pose: Utkata Konasana, aka Goddess Squat
How to do it: Step the feet a little wider then hip-width apart, turn out your toes and bend your knees. Make sure the knees are tracking in line with the big toes and are stacked on top of the ankles. Place the hands in prayer (Anjali Mudra) at the chest. Keep your tailbone tucked and core active to lengthen the spine. To challenge yourself even further, pulse with your breath: on the exhale, sink your seat deeper, and on the inhale rise. Feel the burn!
Try the rest of our Yoga For Toning series below: