Head to knee pose or Janu Sirasana
Sit with both the legs stretched out. Pull the heel of your left foot towards the inside of the right thigh, making sure the toes do not tuck under the right leg. Make sure the right heel, ankle, calf, knee, thigh and hip are in one line keeping your toes flexed.
As you inhale, raise your arms over the head and on an exhalation fold forward to hold the feet.
Widen the elbows, extending the trunk, keeping the chest along the right thigh, to grab the inner and outer foot bone of your foot with both your hands.
Breathe here. As you inhale, bring the trunk up, straighten the left leg. Repeat on the other side.
Tips: If you are unable to hold your feet, feel free to use a scarf or a yoga belt. To make sure you the spine doesn’t round allow your chin to remain parallel to the floor. The idea is to extend and go down. Don’t be in a hurry to get your head down to the knee.
Benefits: Aids digestions. Tones kidneys, spleen and the liver.
Posture dedicated to Sage Marichi or Marichayasana 1
Sit with both the legs stretched out. Bend the right knee and place the foot flat on the floor allowing the foot to touch the inner side of the out stretched left thigh. Hold the right shin with the left hand and allow the right arm round the right shin and thigh, bending the right elbow keeping the arms behind the back at the level of the waist. Move the tight hand behind the back and clasp the hand. Inhale, lift the spine up and exhaling extend and bend forward bringing the head down.
Repeat with another hand.
Tip: Use a Yoga belt or scarf if your hands don’t clasp.
When bent in the forward position make sure the left shoulder is pulled into the body moving towards the right shoulder.
Benefits: Increases blood circulation of the abdominal organs. Fingers gain strength. It will keep your spine elasticated.
Hands crossed behind spine in lotus pose or Baddha Padmasana
Sit in the lotus pose taking one leg up at a time placing the foot on the inner side of the thigh. Inhale deep, exhaling swing the left arm back from the shoulders and bring the hand near the right hip grabbing on to the left big toe and inhale.
Similarly, exhale and swing the right arm back from the shoulders and bring the hand near the right hip grabbing on to the right big toe. As you inhale, lift the chest up, throwing the head back and exhaling bend forward in baddha padmasana from the hips allowing the head to reach for the floor. Breathe here. Inhaling come up, release the arms and then the legs.
Tip: use a yoga belt or scarf under the foot if the fingers don’t reach the toes.
Benefits: Expands the chest and increases the range of shoulder movement. It also relieves constipation.
Seated Angle pose or Upavistha Konasana
Sit with legs stretched out. Widen the legs one by one moving them to their respective sides making sure that the legs are extended and rests on the floor. Hold the big toes with the thumb, index and middle fingers. As you inhale, lift the spine up.
Exhale pull the trunk forward, keeping the chin up and take the head to the floor. Then, clasp the feet with the hands and try to rest your chest on the floor. Breathe here. Inhaling release the hands to sit up and bring the legs back together.
Tips: Make sure your spine is concave when bending forward.
Benefits: Stretches the hamstrings and helps blood circulate in the pelvic region. It also helps prevent hernia and helps in sciatic pains.
You can read part 2 of our Yoga Week series with Rasha Balooch here.
Location Credit - BnB Studio. Andheri (W).
Rasha Balooch can be reached at her Facebook page’Lovelivelight Yoga by Rasha.’ She’s also on Instagram at ‘lovelivelightyoga.’