Posts tagged with: Thigh

YPFW :: Half Lord of the Fishes Pose

With a name like the Half Lord of the Fishes Pose, you’d think that this would look a little more fish-like, but it’s not, and it’s a relatively simple position to get yourself into, after you do it a couple of times!

Ardha Matsyendrasana, also known as the Half Lord of the Fishes Pose
(ARE-dah MOT-see-en-DRAHS-anna)
ardha = half
Matsyendra = king of the fish (matsya = fish
indra = ruler), a legendary teacher of yoga

To do the Half Lord of the Fishes Pose: Begin in the the Staff Pose (Dandasana),

From Staff Pose – Dandasana, bring sole of right foot to floor on the outside of left thigh. Bend left knee, and tuck left foot in near right buttock. Inhale and bring left arm up near left ear.

Exhale and twist right arm, bringing left elbow to outside of right knee and right palm to the floor, just behind sit bones. Look out over right shoulder, but don’t overturn neck – twist originates in belly, not neck. On each inhale, draw spine long, and on each exhale, twist a little deeper.

Be sure to keep sole of right foot flat on floor. When you release pose, take a slight counter twist to opposite direction. Release legs and switch position as you prepare to twist to other side.

Beginners: may want to sit on some padding if uncomfortable. If you cannot bend the left leg into the ideal position, keep it extended.

Advanced: Come into a bind with arms. Thread left arm back underneath right knee. Reach right arm behind back, and clasp right wrist with left hand.

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YPFW :: Tree pose

The Tree Pose is also known as Vrksasana (vrik-SHAHS-anna), vrksa meaning tree.

The Tree Pose helps strengthen your thighs, calves, ankles and back. It can also increase the flexibility of hips and groin area. With consistent practice, both your balance and your concentration can be improved. This pose is recommended for women with sciatica and flat feet.

To do the Tree Pose, begin in Tadasana (Mountain Pose). Shift weight slightly onto left foot, keeping inner foot firm to floor, bend right knee. Reach down with right hand and clasp right ankle.

Draw right foot up and place sole against inner left thigh; if possible, press right heel into inner left groin, toes pointing toward floor. Center of pelvis should be directly over left foot. Rest hands on top rim of pelvis. Make sure pelvis is in neutral position, with the top rim parallel to floor.

Lengthen tailbone toward floor. Firmly press right foot sole against inner thigh and resist with outer left leg. Press hands together in Anjali Mudra (AHN-jah-lee MOO-dra). Gaze softly at a fixed point in front on the floor about 4 or 5 feet away. Stay for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Step back to Tadasana (Mountain Pose) with an exhalation and repeat for same length of time with legs reversed.

This is one of my favorite yoga poses ever. It really works my brain because I have to keep myself balanced both physically and mentally!

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YPFW :: Fierce Pose

Utkatasana Fierce Pose (also known as the Power or the Chair Pose) :: (OOT-kah-TAHS-anna)
utkata = powerful, fierce

Benefits: strengthens the ankles, thighs, calves, and spine, stretches shoulders and chest, stimulates the abdominal organs, diaphragm, and heart and reduces flat feet by lifting through the arches

How to:
Stand in Mountain Pose (Tadasana). Inhale and raise arms perpendicular to floor. Either keep arms parallel, palms facing inward, or join palms.

Exhale and bend knees, trying to take thighs as nearly parallel to floor as possible, grounding through heels. Knees will project out over feet, and torso will lean slightly forward over thighs until front torso forms approximately a right angle with tops of thighs. Keep inner thighs parallel to each other and press heads of the thigh bones down toward heels.

Firm shoulder blades against back. Take tailbone down toward floor and in toward pubis to keep lower back long.

Stay for 30 seconds to a minute. To come out of pose straighten knees with an inhalation, lifting strongly through arms. Exhale and release arms to sides into Mountain Pose again.

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YPFW :: Warrior III Pose

Warrior III Pose :: (veer-ah-bah-DRAHS-anna)
Virabhadra = the name of a fierce warrior, an incarnation of Shiva, described as having a thousand heads, a thousand eyes, and a thousand feet; wielding a thousand clubs; and wearing a tiger’s skin.

Type of Pose :: standing and balancing
Benefits: Strengthens legs and abdomen, can improve balance

How to do Warrior III :: From Warrior I, bring hands onto hips. Bring weight forward into front foot as you gently kick up back leg. At same time, bring torso forward until it is parallel to floor.

Keep neck relaxed, as natural extension of spine. Keep both hips pointing toward floor as you bring the back leg in line with body. Flex raised foot and keep muscles of raised leg actively engaged. Bring arms back along sides. Repeat on other side.

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