women

Supta tadasana - Reclining Mountain Pose, variation

This supine position, Supta Tadasana will make it easy to feel the natural curve of your lumbar spine (low back), the lengthening through your torso and limbs, and the engagement in your core. Slide your thumbs underneath your buttocks toward your feet to relieve any overarching in the lumbar spine. At the same time, avoid pressing the low back into the floor. You want to maintain the natural curve of the spine. Flex your feet and extend from your buttocks through your heels.

Description: Reclining Mountain Pose, variation

Reclining Mountain Pose, variation

On an exhalation, soften your temples and relax your jaw to encourage a feeling ò relaxation throughout the body. Exhale a little more deeply until the muscles around your belly firm in toward the navel and down toward the lower back. Hold the sides of the mat and roll the outer edges of your upper arms toward the floor to externally rotate your upper arms so that your chest broadens. As you hold the mat, release the trapezius muscle (near the base of the neck) away from your ears.

Lift your arms and interlace your fingers with your palms facing the ceiling. Draw the inner arms down toward the shoulder joint until the arm bone sits firmly in the socket. Exhale deeply until the belly engages, and then slowly start to extend your arms overhead. Extend through the full length of the body for up to a minute here, breathing mindfully. Then release your arms by your side.

Supta Padangusthasana II - Reclining hand-to-Big-Toe Pose II.

Description: Reclining hand-to-Big-Toe Pose II

Reclining hand-to-Big-Toe Pose II

Anantasana requires that you externally rotate and extend the top leg-not an easy movement to master while balancing on your side. In order to do this without losing your balance, you’ll use a blanket to prop your leg that extends to the side in order to learn how to isolate the actions of the hip while you keep the rest of your body steady and stable.

Place a firm blanket roll alongside your upper left thigh and pelvis. Bend your left knee, wrap a strap around your foot near the base of your toes, and extend your left leg toward the ceiling. Take your right hand and hold the outer edge of your mat. Externally rotate your right arm while keeping a neutral spine and maintaining length through the right side of your body.

Slowly extend the left leg out to the side. The blanket should catch the upper-most thigh where the femur (thighbone) and the hip joint intersect. By resting your leg on the blanket this way, you’ll guide your femur to move toward the center of the hip socket and encourage the inner thigh to lengthen away from the pubis.

Stay in Supta Padagusthasana for up to three minutes as you practice isolating the movement and extension of your left leg in your left hip. When you find that sweet rhythm of stability support-ing mobility, ride the currents of your breath and relax the temples. Soften the diaphragm and allow the abdomen and pelvis area to be supple. Then lift the left leg and return to Supta Takdasana

Plank pose

Description: Plank pose

Plank pose

Plank pose will activate your abdominal and spinal muscles and engage your core strength. When done skillfully, this core support makes it possible to maintain the natural curves in your spine, which will help keep you stable in Anantasana.

After you release Supta Padangust-hasana, roll over onto your stomach and press back into Balasana (Child’s Pose). Then come up onto your hands and knees and adjust your body so your shoulders are above your wrists. From here, straighten your legs back to come into Plank Pose.

You’ll stabilize your arms and lengthen your legs to support the alignment in the torso and spine. Life the inner thighs toward the ceiling and extend through the entire length of your legs from the flesh of the buttocks through the heels.

Move the upper arms into the shoulder sockets and lengthen the sides of the sternum toward the chin so it feels as if you are drawing your chest forward between your arms. Release the trapezius muscle away from the ears to soften the neck.

Gently pull the pubic bone up toward the navel and then in toward the lower back. The front of the body should now feel firm, like a tabletop stabilizing your back body. imagine the navel is the center of the tabletop, and firm your abdominal muscles evenly from the pubic bone to the navel and from the navel to the diaphragm. Even as the front of your body is firm, keep the abdomen long.

Lengthen the back of the body, like a tablecloth spread over the stability of the front body, by reaching through the buttocks and heels. Keep lifting the inner thighs toward the ceiling.

Breathe smoothly and remain in the pose for up to a minute. Look forward several feet in front of you and continue to extend the sternum forward to encourage the chest to open.

With your core engaged and the natural curves of your spine fully supported, you’ll feel the kind of stability you’ll need to replicate while balancing in your fullest expression of the final pose. To release Plank, slowly bend your elbows and lie on the floor.

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