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Yoga 101: Balancing Postures to Practice Every Day

Although it seems like winter weather patterns will never end, spring is officially here. Seasonal change affects our bodies much like it affects the nature that surrounds us. Our bodies are incredibly adaptable as we transition from season to season. That said, you may discover that you experience the less than desirable effects of your body’s spring cleaning. As your body gets ready for spring and summer, you may experience uncomfortable congestion and stagnant energy.

As the weather begins to change, practicing balancing postures can support mental, emotional and physical alignment, keeping you healthy all year long!


All About Balancing Postures


Benefits:

  • Strengthens ankles, legs, thighs and abdomen
  • Stretches calves and hamstrings
  • Improves balance and coordination
  • Hones focus/attention/coordination

Contraindications:

  • Injury to low back
  • Injury to ankle or knee
  • Irregular blood pressure

Adaptations: 

  • Microbend your standing leg
  • Practice with the support of a chair or the wall
  • Use any props (blocks, straps, etc.) that support the posture

Practice these two balancing postures daily to support your body as we transition from the colder winter and early spring months to the warmer months of spring and summer.


1) Ardha Chandrasana (Half-Moon Pose)


Providing an incredible stretch and powerful muscle engagement, half-moon pose challenges you to focus your mind, pay attention to your breath, and stabilize and align your physical body. By steadying your breath and focusing your gaze, you will easily enter the present moment with a calm mind and a strong body.

Get Started: Begin with your right foot facing the front of the mat. Engage your standing leg. Ground your right hand down on the floor or a block. Lift the left leg parallel (or higher) with the floor, stacking your hips. Flex the left foot and reach back through your heal. The left arm can stay on your hip. Once you find balance, extend the arm up towards the sky, opening across the chest. Allow your shoulder blades to move down your back. Pause between sides to receive the benefits of the posture- then repeat on the other side.


2) Natarajasana (Lord of the Dancers Pose)


This powerful and challenging posture combines balance with backbend, expanding across the heart center and calling upon our deepest inner attention. You will receive all of the strengthening and focusing benefits of balancing while working against the compression of the spine and expanding your lung capacity.

Get Started: Begin with your right foot facing the front of the mat. Engage your standing leg. Lift the left foot towards the sitting bone and take hold of the inner foot/ankle. Encourage your knees to move together and your hips to square forward toward the top of the mat. Extend your right arm to the sky. Press you foot firmly into the hand to broaden across the chest and open your shoulders. With concentration, slowly extend your left foot and leg back and up, while simultaneously reaching your torso and right arm forward and up. Pause between sides to receive the benefits of the posture- then repeat on the other side.

If you’d like to discuss how best to attune to the season through yoga, we’re here to support you! Feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns, or for an individual session.