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Urdvha Dhanurasana And Salambha Savagasana Yoga


Urdvha Dhanurasana (Full Backbend)

This stretches the chest and lungs and strengthens the arms, wrists, legs, buttocks, abdomen and spine. It is said to stimulate the thyroid and pituitary glands, increase energy and counteract depression. A therapeutic pose for asthma, back pain, infertility and osteoporosis.

Posture

Lying on your back, bend both knees and place feet flat on the floor, hip width apart. Place palms under shoulders. Press down on the palms and feet, inhale and lift the hips off the floor. Lightly squeeze the knees together to keep the knees hip-width apart. Press down into the arms and shoulders to lift the chest up. Engage the legs and buttocks to lift the hips higher. Breathe and hold for 4-8 breaths. To release, exhale and slowly roll the spine back to the floor.

Intermediate Modification

Do a bridge instead. Slide arms alongside the body, palms facing down beside hips. Raise your back, arms providing support on the sides.

Basic Modification

If you have difficulty supporting your raised pelvis, slide a block under your sacrum and rest the pelvis on it for support.

What Not To Do?

Keep your chin up and rest weight on your neck.

Salambha Savagasana (Shoulder Stand)

This stretches shoulders and the neck and tones legs and buttocks. It also improves digestion, helps relieve symptoms of menopause, reduces fatigue and alleviates insomnia.

Posture

Lie on the floor with arms alongside the body, palms down. Bend the knees, kick and rock the legs up and back, bringing the bent knees to the forehead and placing the hands under the hips. Cupping the hips like you are holding a big bowl of fruit, begin to lift the legs up, straightening them over your head.

Support the weight of the body with the arms and the shoulders, having very little or no weight on your head and neck. Find a position where you can balance the legs over the head and relax the leg muscles, using as little effort as possible to be still. Breathe and hold for 410 breaths. To release, bend knees back to the head. Carefully and slowly roll the spine back onto the floor.

Intermediate Modification

Place arms on hips for support and rest weight on elbows. Keep feet parallel to the floor.

Basic Modification

Have the hips resting on the floor and the legs resting against a wall. Bend your knees to right angles, push your feet against the wall and lift your pelvis off the floor. Use your arms to support your back and keep torso and thighs perpendicular to the floor. To come down, slowly roll down from the wall.

What Not To Do?

Don't attempt this exercise if you are not supple enough. Use the wall for support for about a month before trying to lift feet away for the complete pose.

Note: Be mindful of your limits while practicing and prevent injuries.

 

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