Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Help Cupid's Arrow in Urdhva Dhanurasana

February Pose of the Month - Urdhva Dhanurasana

With Valentine's Day approaching, it may be time to add some heart openers to your practice. For our pose of the month, we want to shoot our hearts to the sky - with Urdhva Dhanurasana or Wheel Pose. Since this is also referred to as Upward Bow Pose, it is a perfect match for February. Use this super strengthening pose to increase energy, relieve stress and stretch the low back.

  • Strengthens wrists, arms, legs, buttocks, abdomen and spine
  • Expands chest and lungs
  • Increases energy
  • Counteracts depression
  • Theraputic for asthma, back pain, infertility and osteroporosis
How To:

  1. Begin lying on your back. Bend your knews and set your feet on the floor, heels as close to the sitting bones as possible. Place the hands beside the head with the fingers pointed back towards the shoulders.
  2. Begin to lift the hips off the floor - keep your thighs and feet parallel.
  3. Press firmly through the feet and hands to lift up onto the crown of you head - keep your arms parallel.
  4. Press your feet and hands into the floor; begin to lift your head off the floor as you straighten your arms. Turn the upper thighs slightly inward and firm the outer thighs. Let the head hang to look at the floor.
  5. Imagine the bed behind your heart and focus on expanding to aim up and out. Advanced practitioners can raise one left to the sky. Stay in the pose anywhere from 5 to 10 seconds or more, breathing easily. Repeat anywhere from 3 to 10 times.
  6. Reverse your steps to come out of the pose, lower your body gently to the floor.

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