5 Yoga Poses You Must Try If You're An Artist

Being an artist can have a huge impact on your body depending on your medium. Painters, tattoo artists, and graphic designers are just a few out of a wide variety of creators that depend on their body to practice and ultimately complete their work. However, the many hours that it takes to create artwork can end up taking a toll on the body if it's not cared for properly, making the job of creating harder than it needs to be. Yoga is a wonderful tool artists can use to take care of the shoulders, wrists, neck and back - the areas that ultimately end up suffering from repetitive motions and poor posture. I know from first hand experience through creating the art and clothing designs you've seen here, that yoga is a vital component to my overall well-being. Here are just a few of my favorite yoga asanas that help me take care of my body so I can continue feeling good while I create!

1. Floor Shoulder Stretch

Yoga asanaInkkStudios / Getty Images
This is one of my favorite poses to incorporate into my flow because it hits all the best spots in my shoulder. Starting from all fours, you'll keep your left hand planted on the ground, inhale and stretch your right arm straight up towards the ceiling, twisting your torso while keeping your hips squared. With an exhale, release your right arm and thread it passed your left armpit, bringing your right arm and shoulder to the ground. You can stay here if this stretch is enough, or your can rotate your left arm back behind you or binding behind your right hip. 
Stay here for a couple rounds of breath and then repeat on the other side. 


2.  Half Dog Pose | Uttana Shishosana

Half Dog Pose can be incorporated into your flow as a restorative pose that still provides incredible benefits for your artist body. It stretches the hips, hamstrings, entire spine, arms and shoulders. To get here, you can start in child's pose with your arms stretched forward. Engage your arms, shoulders and core, and slide your torso forward while you lift your hips and bring your legs to the shape of an L with your hips above your knees. Your head and neck stays in alignment by having your forehead rest on the ground. Your chest is broad, pushing to the ground and your shoulders away from your ears. Pull in your navel to support your lower back and take several deep breaths here, focusing on your shoulders. 

3. Wide- Legged Forward Fold | Prasarita Padottanasana


If you're feeling tight in the neck and shoulders after a long period of drawing or painting, this pose will help relieve some of the pain with a little help from gravity. Starting with your legs wide apart and your feet parallel, slowly start to bend at the hips while keeping your spine straight and core engaged. You can begin with you arms at your hips, and once you are bent to a comfortable position, bring your arms behind your back and interlace your fingers. Remain engaged in your arms, core, and legs, Breath into your shoulders for a couple rounds. Release  your arms before coming back up. 



4. Fish Pose | Matsyasana


Stretching is a great way to relieve neck and shoulder pain, but it's only one piece of the puzzle. Strengthening the muscles around these heavily used joints is vital to the long term health of your body. Fish pose is a great way to get a little stretch in while you strengthen your neck, back, and improve your posture. Starting from a laying position with your front body on the floor, lift your legs a chest with an inhale. Bring your arms back behind you and engage your shoulders with your palms facing eachother and your feet flexed. Lift even higher with your next inhale as you lift your neck and look up towards the ceiling. Move this into a Bow Pose by bending your knees, grabbing your ankles and lifting even higher. 



5. Chaturanga to Upward Facing Dog Vinyasa


The Chaturanga to Upward Facing Dog Vinyasa is usually used as a transitional flow in between asana sets, but is super beneficial on it's own. Just as the Fish and Boat poses described above, this pose creates strength as well as providing a stretch. Doing this vinyasa multiple times a day, on its own or as apart of a longer flow, would definitely make a positive impact on your artist body. 

Starting in a plank, you'll lower halfway down to the top of a push-up with your elbows tucked in to your sides and your elbows directly above your wrists. Engage your core by pulling in your navel to support your back. Keep your torso and legs straight and reach back through your heel. Stay here for a couple breaths to challenge yourself and then flow into the Upward Facing Dog position by scooping your chest down, forward and up, rolling your feet so the tops of your feet and ankles are being supported from the ground, and straightening your arms. Shoulders back and down, away from your ears, gaze forward. From here you can move into Down Dog and into a new pose, or repeat.


If you're a creator like me, I can't say enough how important poses like these are for me to continue doing what I love to do - and how much I notice it when I don't incorporate yoga into my daily life! I hope that this post inspires you to give these a try, whether you're an artist or not, because taking care of our minds and bodies is a great thing for everyone to practice.

While you're here, feel free to check out my ~ Yoga Collection ~ which is full of artistic clothing and even some unique yoga mats all designed by me! 

♥Sammi Lee