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This 40 min power yoga workout will get your energy & blood moving, all body awakened . We will practice some fun moves to get you present, focused & more concentrated. You will open your heart for new energy, your mood will be lifted & your will have a nice sense of livelihood in your whole body.
Level : intermediate/advance.
Focus: Full Body.
Here is a full list of the asanas we will go thought the practice with the benefits you will get by practising them often enough.
A very close resemblance to Urdhva Prasarita Eka Padasana (Standing Split Pose) is Tri Pada Adho Mukha Svanasana (Three Legged Downward Facing Dog Pose). While in the former pose, it is the standing leg that stretches the most, whereas in the later, its is the extended leg that stretches the most. While both these poses have almost the same benefits, given below are the detailed explanations of benefits for Standing Split Pose:
Hamstrings and Quadriceps: In Urdhva Prasarita Eka Padasana, the standing leg muscles like; the hamstrings, quadriceps, and calves are stretched the most, while in the extended leg, the gluteus maximus is stretched the most.
Knees, Calves, and Ankles: As with any standing balancing yoga pose, the calf muscles are strengthened while engaging the knees and the ankles, thereby strengthening the lower body.
Shoulders and Arms: In Standing Split Pose, with the support of the arms and shoulders, the flexibility of both the upper body and the lower body are improved. The use of the arms and shoulders also helps to open the heart, provided the breathing is smooth, and well coordinated with the body movements.
Abdomen and Lower Back: With the flexing of the hips and the core muscles being engaged ( belly pulled in), the abdominal muscles get strong and flexible with practice. Strong and flexible abdominal muscles supports the lower back, which further supports the muscles at the base of the spine. Strong abdominal muscles also helps for better functioning of the internal organs, especially the liver and kidney. This posture acts like a great way to support the detoxification process that happens naturally in the body.
Spine and Flexibility: The engaging of the muscles at the upper body with the deep stretch are strengthened leading to better flexibility with practice. This eventually also strengthens the spine, thereby improving in its flexibility, while also improving the body posture.
Chest and Diaphragm: With the engaging of the shoulders and the arms, the chest and the diaphragm muscles are also engaged keeping them active. Therefore, the breathing improves with the efficient use of the diaphragm muscles, reducing symptoms related to asthma. The chest, when active, keeps the heart well supported, an encouraging sign for the good supply of blood.
Chakra and Energy: With the practice of Standing Split Pose the chakras can also be activated to bring balance in the body. The Ajna Chakra (Third Eye) when activated, helps to improve; focus, concentration, memory, and will power, while teaching one to surrender, and stay calm and content. Though to achieve this, students need to gain a lot of stability in the body and mind.
Unlike many arm balance yoga poses, Vasisthasana (Side Plank Pose) is a side arm balance pose and comes with some benefits apart from preparering the body for more challenging arm balance poses. Given below are some of these benefits:
Arms and Shoulders: The practice of Vasisthasana (Side Plank Pose) is mainly done to improve the strength of the arms and shoulders, while also teaching the students to engage the scapula (shoulder blades) since this is essential for all arm balance yoga poses. While strengthening the arms, they also get toned.
Core and Abdominal Muscles: Every arm balance pose requires greater understanding of using the abdominal muscles by engaging the entire core muscles. Thus, with this practice of side arm balance, students will improve in their core strength while learning to focus on using the abdominal area efficiently.
Hips and Spine: When engaging the core muscles, students will also use the pelvic floor muscles to hold the hips in position. This will help to bring stability to the hips when practiced equally on both sides. When there is stability in the hips, and the core muscles get stronger, eventually they all support the spine.
Wrists and Feet: Side Plank Pose puts pressure mostly with the weight of the body resting on the wrists and feet. Wrists are essential part of all arm balance poses, and in this case even the feet, hence a great pose to work on them to build strength and flexibility.
Lower body: The legs plays a great role from the engaging of the gluteus maximus, hamstrings, quadriceps, and calves. The toning of the lower body is done while improving in the strength and flexibility, of the same.
Awareness and Endurance: Knowing the body and it's limitations are essential part of practicing this pose. While being aware of the body as well as the breathing pattern, this pose teaches students both, to let go, or get stronger. This will further help in building endurance and focus for more challenging poses.
Balance and Stability: The practice of Side Plank Pose (Vasisthasana) is about both sides of the spine as well as both sides of the brain. Focusing on getting equal stretch and stability on both side while with this posture also helps in bringing balance to both sides of the body as well as the mind.
Given below are the benefits derived with the practice of Parivrtta Hasta Padangusthasana (Revolved Hand To Big Toe Pose):
Some of the benefits derived are similar to the practice of Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana D (Standing Hand to Big Toe Pose D) since Revolved Hand To Big Toe Pose is a variation of this standing balancing posture.
Stretches and Strengthens: The practice of Revolved Hand To Big Toe Pose stretches the muscles of the legs, with deeper stretch of the gluteus maximus (buttocks). These muscles support the hips and hence the strengthening of the same is important. It also helps to improve the strength of the hips, the side lower back muscles, shoulders, the side abdominal muscles, and psoas muscles.
Hips and Flexibility: The twisting of the hips in Revolved Hand To Big Toe Pose is similar to the twists in Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half Lord Of The Fishes Pose), but with limited range of motion since its a one legged balancing posture. With focus and practice it helps to improve and maintain both the flexibility and stability of the hips. The important aspect to keep in mind in this internal rotation of the hip, is to maintain stability of the pelvis which come with engaging the pelvic floor muscles and the abdominal muscles. This movement therefore helps to improve the flexibility of the hips, going comfortably inwards while strengthening the pelvic floor girdle.
Toning and Lengthening: Revolved Hands To Big Toe Pose since is a twist helps with toning of the leg muscles, hips, sides of the abdomen, and arms. This revolved pose helps to lengthen the muscles of the spine making it more flexible, and creating more space to twist deeper and hold the pose longer.
Awareness and Focus: The balance and twist in this pose requires awareness and focus. Awareness of the core and abdominal muscles, while pulling in the belly keeping them engaged, helps with the twist. With deeper twist, focusing on balance with one foot grounded, shoulders aligned, and hips square comes with practice. Hence a great pose that encourages students to be aware and focus with proper alignment of the body.
Energy and Endurance: Twisting of the abdominal area, the chest and the heart area requires deep breathing, hence with this the body is energized, slowly building endurance with practice to stay longer. When the twist is aligned properly along with the right kind of breathing, the lungs work better taking in more oxygen. This helps to bring energy in the body, increasing the lung capacity.
Balance and Stability: Revolved Hand To Big Toe Pose (Parivrtta Hasta Padangusthasana) requires awareness and focus to help keep the body balanced along with the stability of the hips and shoulders. When the body is energized there is an improved sense of balance, helping to calm the mind, better perseverance, that put together brings balance in the physical body and the mental state of mind. Hence there is scope for inward awareness of the principles of svadhyaya of moving into the practice slowly. Thus the practice of this pose brings balance in the Root Chakra (Muladhara Chakra), that talks about balance, stability, confidence and surrender.
Others: Dancers, runners, swimmers, teenagers, etc., can benefit from this practice since it tones and shapes the body while strengthening the gluteus maximus, and muscles of the hips and abdomen.
Some of the benefits of this Garland pose (Malasana) variation are:
Great for lower back: This pose is good for the entire back and builds flexibility in the muscles related to the back. The spine expands with tightening of the lower back muscles.
Strengthens knees: As the knees are bent, the muscles around the knee are flexed.
Conditions legs: Works good for the entire leg, the inner thighs, quadriceps, hamstrings, calves and the ankles. The weight of the body on the ankle in this squat position ensures proper blood circulation and therefore greater functioning of the leg muscles.
Opens up chest and shoulders: The chest and the shoulders become strong and the muscles begin to expand therefore improving blood flow and flexibility.
Improves Digestion: Malasana has many health benefits. The abdominal organs are well massaged and the toning of the abdominal muscles helps improve digestion.
Relieves lower back ache due to Menstruation: It is useful for lower back pains especially for women during menstruation. Malasana (Garland Pose) expands the lower back muscles, keeps the hips strong and gives a great support to the reproductive organs.
In summary, Malasana (Garland Pose) tones overall body: neck, arms, chest, tummy, hips, thighs and legs.
Bird of Paradise pose, has many advantages or benefits that are related to the outer physical body in terms of strength and stability, but we will explain the importance of this posture from the inner physical body that talks about the vital organs and their functions.
Active heart pumping: The strength in getting into the Bird of Paradise is not only to do with the muscles alone but also requires the heart which is a muscular organ in us to pump blood better through the blood vessels to hold the leg within the interlocked hands. The pumping of the heart through the blood vessels of the circulatory system is improved with the good flow of oxygen. Hence Svarga Dvijasana demands awareness of breath using the lungs in this case.
Activates the lungs with increased capacity: The expansion and contraction of the diaphragm helps in expansion of the lungs. During exhalation (breathing out), the diaphragm relaxes and during inhalation (breathing in) the diaphragm expands, helping the lungs to therefore expand. This process is put to maximum during the practice of Bird of Paradise, as the contraction of the diaphragm muscle plays an important role to lifting the leg up while still remaining in balance to hold the leg high up.
The entire system of the body is activated: No doubt all yoga poses have an impact on the entire human body keeping all the organs from within active with the contraction of the concerned muscles. Hence here in Svarga Dvijasana too while going into the pose and while remaining in the pose the entire human system like the endocrine system, the nervous system, respiratory system, the circulatory system, the reproductive system, the digestive system, the immune system and the urinary system are all active with the right kind of contraction of the various muscles with the proper flow of oxygen throughout the body.
Extension of the spine for better flow of prana: In Bird of Paradise Pose, the extended leg forces the torso to remain fairly straight, and this comes with practice. Here with the torso being straight, the hips too are forced to be square, which helps the easy flow of prana from the base of the spine to the entire body through the well connected nerves. This keeps the spine fit and active reducing the blockages around the spine for easy flow.
Stretches all the muscles in the human body: The deep stretch of the leg which is being raised, opens the hip adductors and the gluteus maximus. The leg that is balancing the body the lower leg muscles like the calves, the arms holding the legs in interlock, where the biceps and the triceps are. The core strength muscles and the abdominal muscles to get the body in balance. Hence in this pose the entire body muscles are contracted to gain energy to hold the body in the pose.
Opens the hips and the lower back improving flexibility: With the deep extension of the legs flexing the body at the hips and keeping the lower back muscles contracted, it opens and clears any kind of stiffness while in the pose and with practice this improves the flexibility of the hips. No doubt one needs to have flexibility of the hips to master this pose, but repeated practice of this pose keeping the body awareness, helps to opens the hips deeper for more advance level poses.
Improves the balance of the body with awareness: No yoga pose can be mastered without awareness. And once the awareness is mastered the body feels light while in any posture, and this same rule applies to Bird Of Paradise Pose. The awareness of the movement of the body becomes essential to gain better balance with the connection of the breath and hence this pose gives room for the same.
Improved balance calms the mind and reduces anxiety: This pose being an Advance Level balancing pose is standing position, works wonders for those who have a flexible body but needs to work on the awareness to calm the mind. A generally fit body can master this pose, keeping the focus and stability in mind.
Improves the posture of the body with the deep stretch of the muscles: Svarga Dvijasana, requires focus, and this helps one to remain in balance for sometime in this pose. Keeping the back and the hip straight with the chest thrown forward and out, anyone with a drooping posture can gain from the practice of this pose.
Standing Bow Pose benefits the following muscles:
Arms and Shoulders
Pistol Squat Pose Holding Foot (Eka Pada Padangusthasana Squat) is a full squat pose that requires strength and flexibility of the muscles of the legs, and lower back along with the core muscle strength to help balance the body on one foot.
With focus, this variation of Squat Pose or Toe Balance (Prapadasana) (but with feet on the floor) helps build coordination and stability in the hips, spine, shoulders, knees and feet.
Pistol Squat Pose Holding Foot can also be done in a dynamic way to build strong gluteus maximus, quadriceps and hamstrings muscles.
Given that this pose helps tone the legs, apart from strengthening the leg muscles, it can be included in Sports Yoga Sequences, especially as a warm-up for runners.
For starters Pistol Squat Pose Holding Foot can be practice with a partner to gain comfort and balance, initially with support.
Benefits of Bakasana and Parsva Bakasana are:
Maximum use of the core muscles and hence also strengthening them.
Strengthens the arms and the shoulders with the balance.
Improves co-ordination with mind, body and breath for better balance.
Brings more awareness to the body, improving balance
Strengthens the hips and the gluteus maximus muscles.
Improves the overall confidence in the body and the mind.