Yoga Poses For Beginners
If you are new to the practice of yoga, it is advisable to begin yoga routine with warm-ups and Sukshma Vyayama (gentle exercises). Yoga poses for beginners should start with the Sukhasana or The Easy Yoga Pose, because as a child you may have naturally sat in the Sukhasana when you were happy, relaxed or playing. Yoga calms the mind and overall energizes the body.
Here are my picks for the 10 most important yoga poses for beginners.
Mountain Pose – Tadasana
This pose teaches one to stand with majestic steadiness like a mountain. The term Tadasana is a combination of the words ‘tada ‘(the Sanskrit word for mountain) and ‘asana’ (meaning posture).
How to do Tadasana:
- Stand tall with feet together, shoulders relaxed, weight evenly distributed through your soles, arms at sides.
- Take a deep breath and raise your hands overhead, palms facing each other with arms straight. Reach up toward the sky with your fingertips.
Benefits: A correctly executed Tadasana will use every muscle in the body. It improves posture and, when practiced regularly, can help reduce back pain. This pose strengthens the thighs, knees, ankles, abdomen, and buttocks. It is also helpful for relieving sciatica and for reducing the affects of flat feet.
Corpse Pose – Savasana
The Sanskrit word ‘shava‘ means ‘corpse‘. This pose looks like sleeping pose. It is very simple and everyone can do this asana.
How to do Savasana:
- Lie flat on your back, like our sleeping pose. Legs should be separated.
- Keep your arms at your side and your palms facing up. Just relax.
- Close your eyes and breathe deeply and slowly through the nostrils.
- Start concentrating from your head to your feet. This means you are consciously relaxing your each part of the body. Don’t move ahead without relaxing particular part of the body.
- On each inhaling and exhaling (breathing) think that your body is totally relaxed. Let your tension, stress, depression and worry run away on each exhaling.
Benefits: Excellent asana for stimulating blood circulation. Beneficial for those suffering from neurological problem, asthma, constipation, diabetes, indigestion.
Warrior Pose – Virabhadrasana
This pose is named after Veerabhadra, a fierce warrior, an incarnation of Lord Shiva. The story of the warrior Veerabhadra, as all stories from Upanishads, has a moral that adds value to our life.
How to do Virabhadrasana:
- Stand straight with your legs by keeping distance 3-4 feet between each other.
- Inhale and raise the both hands parallel to ground and turn your head to the right.
- While exhaling slowly turn your right foot at 90 degrees to the right.
- Slowly bend your right knee. Keep in mind that right thigh should be parallel to the ground. Stay in this position for some time. Breathe deeply for 4 times.
Benefits: Improves balance in the body, augments stamina and releases stress in shoulders. Also, strengthens the legs, arms, lower back and is especially helpful for those leading a sedentary lifestyle.
Tree Pose – Vrikshasana
Tree pose comes from two words: Vriksha – Tree; Asana – Posture or Pose. This posture replicates the graceful, steady stance of a tree.
How to do Vrikshasana:
- Stand erect. Keep the feet together.
- Fold the right leg and placed it at the top of left thighs with the toes of right leg should pointed downwards.
- The right leg should perpendicular to the left leg.
- Extend your arms above your head.
- Inhale and try to make Namaskar mudra with your palms.
- Balance the pose as long as you can because balancing is utmost important in Tree pose.
- Try to make your spine straight and feel the stretching from toes to fingers.
Benefits: Tree Pose stretches the thighs, groins, torso, and shoulders. It builds strength in the ankles and calves, and tones the abdominal muscles. The pose also helps to remedy flat feet and is therapeutic for sciatica.
Triangle Pose – Trikonasana
Triangle pose is known as Trikonasana in Sanskrit—tri meaning three and kona meaning corner. Triangle is a therapeutic pose that provides many benefits including strengthening of the core and legs
How to do Trikonasana:
- Extend arms out to sides, then bend over your right leg.
- Stand with feet about 3 feet apart, toes on your right foot turned out to 90 degrees, left foot to 45 degrees.
- Allow your right hand to touch the floor or rest on your right leg below or above the knee, and extend the fingertips of your left hand toward the ceiling.
- Turn your gaze toward the ceiling, and hold for 5 breaths.
- Stand and repeat on opposite side.
Benefits: Stretches legs, muscles around the knee, ankle joints, hips, groin muscles, hamstrings, calves, shoulders, chest and spine. Strengthens legs, knees, ankles, abdominals, obliques and back. Stimulates function of abdominal organs Improves digestion and constipation. Helps to alleviate back pain and symptoms of menopause. Used therapeutically for anxiety, infertility, neck pain and sciatica.
Chair Pose – Utkatasana
Sitting in an imaginary chair is exactly what we do in Utkatasana or Chair Pose. The “Chair Pose” or “Utkatasana” is also known as the “Fierce” or “The Powerful Pose”.
How to do Utkatasana:
- Stand straight with an erect spine and your arms at your side.
- Keep some distance between your feet.
- Stretch your hands forward to keep them parallel to the ground. Hands should be straight and palms should be facing downward.
- Now bend your knees and bring your pelvis down like sitting on a chair.
- Try to brings your thighs parallel to the ground.
- Hold this position for one minute and keep breathing normally. Bring a smile on your face.
Benefits: Helps strengthen the lower back and torso while toning the thigh, ankle, leg and knee muscles. Exercises the spine, hips and chest muscles, also balances the body and brings determination in the mind. Stimulates the heart, diaphragm, and abdominal organs
Child Pose – Balasana
The word “Balasana” comes from the Sanskrit words “bala” (meaning “child”) and “asana” (meaning “pose”).
How to do Balasana:
- Kneel on the floor.
- Touch your big toes together and sit on your heels, then separate your knees about as wide as your hips.
- Exhale and slowly lay your torso down between your thighs.
- Broaden your lower back across the back of your pelvis and narrow your hip points towards your navel, so that they nestle down onto the inner thighs.
- Lengthen your tailbone away from the back of your pelvis while you lift the base of your skull away from the back of your neck.
- Lay your hands on the floor alongside your torso with your palms up, and release the front of your shoulders towards the floor.
- Feel how the weight of the front of your shoulders pulls your shoulder blades wide across your back.
Benefits: Child’s Pose helps to stretch the hips, thighs, and ankles while reducing stress and fatigue. It gently relaxes the muscles on the front of the body while softly and passive stretching the muscles of the back torso. This resting pose centers, calms, and soothes the brain, making it a therapeutic posture for relieving stress. When performed with the head and torso supported, it can also help relieve back and neck pain. Sometimes used as a counter-pose to backbends, Child’s Pose restores balance and equanimity to the body.
Bridge Pose – Bandha Sarvangasana
As the name suggests, while performing bridge pose all your limbs are working to form a bridge with your body.
How to do Bandha Sarvangasana:
- Lie on floor with knees bent and directly over heels.
- Place arms at sides, palms down. Exhale, then press feet into floor as you lift hips.
- Clasp hands under lower back and press arms down, lifting hips until thighs are parallel to floor, bringing chest toward chin. Hold for 1 minute.
- Make it Easier: Place a stack of pillows underneath your tailbone.
Benefits: Bridge Pose opens the chest, heart, and shoulders. It stretches the spine, the back of the neck, the thighs, and the hip flexors (front hip joints). Bridge Pose also calms the mind and is known to be therapeutic for individuals with high blood pressure. Because it opens the chest, it increases lung capacity, which is therapeutic for those with asthma.
Downward Facing Dog Pose – Adho Mukha Svanasana
The Adho Mukha Svanasana looks similar to a how a dog looks when it bends forward..
How to do Adho Mukha Svanasana:
- Stand on four limbs, such that your body forms a table-like structure.
- Exhale and gently lift your hips and straighten your elbows and knees. You need to ensure your body forms an inverted ‘V’.
- Your hands should be in line with your shoulders, and your feet in line with your hips. Make sure that your toes point outwards.
- Now, press your hands into the ground and lengthen your neck. Your ears should touch your inner arms, and you should turn your gaze to your navel.
- Hold for a few seconds, and then, bend your knees and return to the table position.
Benefits: Strengthens the upper body, arms, shoulders, chest and legs. Stretches the whole back of the body, ankles, calves, hamstrings, spine. Stimulates blood circulation. Neutralises the spine between backbends and forward bends. Relief from headaches, insomnia, fatigue, and mild depression. The flow of blood to the brain also calms the nervous system, improves memory and concentration, and relieves stress.
Easy Pose – Sukhasana
The Sukhasana is a comfortable, sitting yoga pose that is ideal for meditation. In Sanskrit, Sukh means ease, happiness, peace or relaxation and this pose is aimed at providing all of it.
How to do Sukhasana:
- Sit on the edge of a firm blanket. Extend your legs in front of your body and sit up straight. Then, cross your legs in front of you at the shins.
- With your knees wide, place each foot beneath the opposite knee. Fold your legs in toward your torso.
- Place your hands on your knees, palms down.
- Balance your weight evenly across your sit bones. Align your head, neck, and spine. Lengthen your spine, but soften your neck. Relax your feet and thighs.
- Gaze straight ahead with soft eyes.
- Hold for up to one minute or for the duration of your meditation or pranayama practice.
- Release and change the cross of your legs.
Benefits: Sukhasana strengthens the back and stretches the knees and ankles. It also opens the hips, groin, and outer thigh muscles (abductors). Sitting upright with your spine aligned also reduces stress and anxiety. It calms the mind and is known to be therapeutic for stress.
December 13, 2017
December 23, 2017
December 20, 2017