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Dancing Natrajasana

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Natraja is one of the names given to lord Shiva, when he appears as a cosmic dancer. Nata meaning "dancer", Raja meaning "king”. How to do Natrajasana? Stand erect with the feet together. Transfer weight to the left leg and bend the right leg to hold the big toe with right hand. As you bend the right knee swivel your shoulder to bring the elbow to face the ceiling, allowing the foot to come near the head. The other hand is stretched out forward, with fingers in jnana mudra. Gaze at the outstretched hand. Stay in this posture as long as comfortable. Come back to stand. Relax. Repeat on the other side. Benefits: This asana is great for strengthening back, shoulders, arms, hips and legs. And for developing a sense of balance, concentration and grace.

Ek Hath Santolanasana

Asana Description: How to do Ek Hath Satolanasana? Assume the final position of Santolanasana Slowly bring the right hand in the center and raise the left arm straight up so that both the arms are in a line and the chest faces forward. Outer side of the right foot is firmly on the ground and the left foot is placed on top of it. This is the final posture. Balance in this position keeping the body straight. Repeat on the left side. Benefits : Practice of this asana strengthens the thighs, spine, arms and shoulders.



Asana Description: This forward bend asana rejuvenates the spine and tones the abdominal organs and gets rid of sluggishness. Paschima means west or back of the body and uttana intense stretch or extension and asana posture or pose. How to do Paschimottasana? Sit with the legs out stretched with the feet together. Place the hands on the knees. Relax your body in this posture. This is the starting posture. Slowly bend from your hip, slide your hands down your legs and grasp your big toes between your thumbs and fingers. If this is not possible you may hold your heels, ankles calves or knees. Hold this position and relax your back and legs allowing them to gently stretch. Without bending your knees gently pull your torso towards your legs. Pull using the arm muscles, do not strain the back. Try to touch your head to the knee. Be careful not to strain. This is the final posture. Hold in this posture for as long as comfortable. Counter-Indications: People suffering from back problems, slip-disc, sciatica, hernia should not practice paschimottanasana.

Gomukhasana (face of a cow pose)

Sit down with legs stretched out. Cross your legs with the right knee directly above the left knee. Bring the left arm up towards the ceiling, Bend the left elbow, bringing the left hand down the center of the back. Bring the right arm out to the right side, bend the elbow and bring the right arm up the center of the back. Hold hands behind the back. Draw the pinky finger toward the center of the spine. Hold this posture for 30 seconds. Relax the arms. Repeat on the other side. How it helps: Relieves backache, sciatica, rheumatism and general stiffness in the shoulders and neck. It is great for improving posture by increasing energy, awareness and generally opening the chest area. A great stretch for surfers, climbers, kayakers or tennis players. - By Manish Pole and Catherine Juliano  

Dwi Hasta Bhujasana (two hands and arms pose)


How to do Dwi Hasta Bhujasana Squat with feet about 45 cm apart. Place both palms flat on the floor between the feet. Focus on a fixed point Begin transferring your weight onto the arms beginning with the right side. Take the left foot off the floor and wrap it around the left arm. The thigh should be resting on the upper arm. Maintain the balance. Transfer the weight of the body back onto both amrs and lift the right leg onto the upper arm above the elbow. The whole body should be supported by the hands. Hold the position for as long as is comfortable. Slowly reverse the order of movements to finish the asana. How it helps Dwi hasta bhujasana is great at strengthening the muscles in the arms and increasing the flexibility of the shoulders and the lower back. The visceral organs are gently massaged as the legs press against the abdomen. Its a great asana to practice when you are trying to understand the importance of the core in arm balances. You learn how to shift your weight slowly by lifting from your core to take some weight off the arms. With regular practice of this asana all other arm balances will become simple and enjoyable! By Manish Pole and Catherine Juliano

Setu asana (bridge pose)

  How to do Setu asana  Sit with the legs stretched forward. Place the palms on either side of the body, just behind the buttocks. Raise the buttocks and lift the whole body upward. Let the head and neck relax. Try to place the soles of the feet on the ground, arms and legs should be strait. Hold the final position for as long as is possible then sowly lower back down to the starting position. How it helps Setu asana is great for strengthening the wrists, arms, back, shoulders and abdomen. It also tones the lumbar region and the Achilles tendon. It is a good preliminary practice to chakrasana.