The Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana)
The cobra pose, or known as bhujangasana, is a back bend yoga pose that stretches muscles on the front of the torso and strengthens your arms and shoulders. Do this in these easy stages.
- Lie down, face prone, legs tightly together and stretched back, forehead on the floor.
- Put your hands, palm down, just under your shoulders.
- Inhale and raise your head, pressing your neck back, now use your hands to push your trunk up until you are bending in a beautiful arc from your lower spine to the back of your neck. You need go no further than this.
- However, if you are supple enough, you can now straighten your arms completely, bend the legs at the knees and drop your head back to touch your feet.
- Even if your head goes nowhere near your feet, drop it back as far as possible and hold the posture with deep breathing.
- Come out of the posture very slowly, returning to the face prone posture. Relax with your head to one side.
Benefits of Cobra Pose:
- Stretches muscles, chest and abdominals
- Reduce hardness of the lower back
- tone the arms and shoulders
- Increases flexibility
- Better in improves menstrual irregularities
- tone up the backside and enliven the heart
- Stimulate and energize the organs, like the kidneys
- Ease in stress and fatigue
- fresh the chest and helps to clear the passages of the heart and lungs
- Make better circulation of blood and oxygen in body, particularly throughout the spinal and pelvic regions
- Improves digestion and tone up the spine
- Very Helpful to ease symptoms of asthma
The Bow Pose (Dhanurasana)
This yoga posture has been named after the shape it takes – that of a bow. This is also an extreme version of the simple bow. This pose is made to open the chest and throat, energize the body, and aid digestion. Take it in these easy stages.
- Lie face prone on your mat. If you are very slim have a nice thick, padded mat for this one.
- Inhale and bend your knees up.
- Stretch back with your arms and catch hold of your ankles, keeping fingers and thumbs all together on the outside.
- Inhale and at the same time raise your head and chest, pulling at your ankles and lifting knees and thighs off the floor.
- Breathe normally, trying to kick up your legs higher and lifting your head up.
- You are now bent like a bow, balancing the weight of your body on your abdomen. You can stop right here but if you can still stretch further, then slide your hands down your legs, lift them higher, keep the knees together and pull back as much as you can. Hold for a few normal deep breaths, then relax back to the face-prone position, head to one side.
Benefits of Bow Pose
- Stretches the entire front of the body, ankles, thighs and groins, abdomen and chest, and throat, and deep hip flexors.
- Strengthens the back and abdominal muscles
- Energize the reproductive organs
- Clean up the chest, neck and shoulders
- Strengthens the leg and arm muscles
- Make back more flexible
- Good stress and fatigue buster
- Very helpful in easement of menstrual discomfort and constipation
- Helps people with renal (kidney) disorders
The Shooting Bow (Akarna Dhanurasana)
The shooting bow pose derives its name from the formation that when one finds his or her body in when doing this pose. The pose is named so because the shape the body takes resembles that of a bow and arrow. Let start this pose with these steps:
- Sit with both legs stretched out in front and back straight.
- Reach forward with both hands and clasp your feet, catching the right foot with the left hand and the left foot with the right hand.
- Inhale, bend the left knee and pull the foot across the body, close to your chest, pointing the elbow up and twisting the body slightly to the right. The left hand stays firm and tight, holding the right foot.
- Hold posture with normal breathing, release slowly, and relax. Repeat on other side. In the beginning it is enough to hold the bent left leg with the right hand. When this is easy, stretch down and hold the left foot with the right hand. Continue to pull on the left foot, lifting it higher on each exhalation.
Benefits of Shooting Bow Pose
- Strengthening the legs, arms
- Helpful in Core muscles build-up
- Improve the grace and concentration
- Beneficial for your belly
- Stimulates digestion
- Pressurize certain acupressure points, like nerve located on the big toe