Guide to yoga

The traditional art of yoga holds different meaning for different people. Some view it as a practical aid that helps with physical ailments and, others perceive it as a method to achieve mental calmness. For many of them, the traditional art is an integral part of life, a way of life. Perception differs from person to person and, so does the need to practice the art of yoga. The reason to practice the mindful art can be various, but the goal is same — to achieve healthy body, mind, and soul, to achieve tranquility in life and to awaken higher consciousness for profound change in lifestyle.

The idea to start the practice of yoga poses marks the first step towards self-transformation. Rest lies in practicing the art with dedication to fulfill the very purpose. In order to reap the most out of yoga practice and to successfully accomplish the purpose, it becomes pivotal to learn thoroughly about the science of yoga. The guide to yoga will feed you with in-depth knowledge about the art, correct practices, benefits and more.

One can always start the practice with beginner series to make the body familiar with the art of yoga and to gain flexibility before progressing to advanced level for higher enrichment. But if you have a curious bone tickling inside you that incites you to gain knowledge of different yoga asanas then this is the perfect stop for you.

Hence, we move further to explore the diverse yoga postures under different categories:

Seated Yoga Poses:

1 Garland Pose (Malasana): Begin the pose in tadasana position. Spread your feet as wide as your mat. Flex your knees, lower down your hips and come into a squat position. Part your thighs slightly wider than your torso. Keep your feet together. Drop your torso a little forward and bring your upper arms to  inside of your knees. Fold your hands in a prayer position such that elbows should press along the inside of the knee. Try to bring the hands to the center of the chest.

2 Hero Pose (Virasana) : Kneel on the mat to bring the knees together and thighs perpendicular to the floor. Separate the feet wider than hip-distance apart. Press the top of each foot and toe nails into the floor. Pull the calf muscles away from the knee and roll them out. Sit on your hips such that the inner portion of calves touches the outer thighs. Place your arms on the knees and draw it up from thighs. Sit in the pose for 1-5 minutes and breathe deeply.

3 Fire Log Pose (Agnistambhasana) : Sit on the mat with legs stretched forward and erect spine. Bend your right knee close to the chest.  Put your right ankle above the left kneecap. Now bend your left knee and bring it under the right knee. Slide left shin beneath the right shin. Spread your toes and press through heels. Press your groin towards the floor and rest your fingertips on the side of the body. Hold the pose for 1 minute.

 

Standing Yoga Poses:

1 Dancer Pose (Natarajasana) : Stand with a straight back and arms by the side. Breathe in, bend your right leg backward and hold the right foot with the right hand. Move the right leg upwards as much as possible. Stretch your left arm forward. Retain the yoga pose for 20-30 seconds.

2 Eagle Pose (Garudasana) : Stand on the yoga mat with arms at the sides. Balance the body weight on right foot and cross the left thigh over right. Make sure the knees are bent over. Fix your sight at one point in front of you. Extend your arms in front. Fold your left arm under the right one.  Bend your elbows, raise your forearms in perpendicular position. Wrap your arms and hands and press your palms together. Lift your elbows up and reach for fingertips.  Keep your shoulder blades towards the waist. Straighten your hips and chest to the front wall and draw your belly in and up. Gaze at the tips of the thumb.

3 Extended Hand To Toe Pose (Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana): Begin in mountain pose. Put your weight on the left foot. Draw your right knee up towards the chest. Place your right arm to the inside of your right thigh. Loop your index and middle finger around the right foot’s big toe. Bring your left hand to your left hip. Engage the abdominal muscles and left leg muscles. Keep the left leg straight. Exhale and stretch your right leg forward. Square both the hips and drop the right hip to keep it in line with the left hip. Hold for 6- 20 breaths.

 

Twisted Yoga Poses:

1 Simple Seated Twist Pose(Parivrtta Sukhasana): Sit on the edge of the yoga mat. Cross your legs in front at the shin. Widen your knees and locate each foot under the opposite knee. Turn your legs towards the torso. Even out your weight. While relaxing your feet and thighs place your right hand behind you. Place your left hand on the outside of the right knee. Twist to your right as you exhale. Gaze over your right shoulder. Hold for 10 breaths. Change the cross of the legs and repeat the pose on opposite side for same time period.

2 Half Lord Of The Fish Pose ( Ardha Matsyendrasana): Sit on the floor with extended legs and arms by the side. Bend both the knees and firm the sole of the feet flat on the floor. Drop your left knee to the floor and place the left foot under right leg and make it rest along the right posterior. Breathe in as you raise the left arm overhead. As you breathe out turn towards the right side and slip your torso through the inside of the right thigh. Locate  your left elbow to the outer of the right knee. Keep your fingertips pointed toward the ceiling. Reach to the back of the body with your right hand and rest it on the floor. Make your torso spiral around the spine from tailbone to the crown of the head. Upon inhalation, lengthen your spine and on  each exhalation — twist. Turn your head over the right shoulder. Press your inner foot stronger on the floor. Hold the pose for 1 minute.

3 Twist Pose (Bharadvaja Asana): Begin in staff pose. Shift your body weight to your right hip. Bend your knees and draw lower legs to the left. Rest your legs on the floor, and tuck your inner left ankle in the arch of the right foot. Lengthen your spine as you inhale and twist your upper torso to the right side as you exhale. Place the left hand on the right thigh and right hand behind the body on the floor. Lift your left palm up. Press through the left hip bone. Move your head over the right shoulder to gaze. Lengthen the spine as you breathe in and twist deeper as you breathe out.  Hold the pose for up to a minute.

The guide to yoga enables you to explore diverse dimensions of traditional art to acquire comprehensive wisdom for refined practices.