Stretching the Spine
- If these asanas are performed regularly it will give the
spine great flexibility of movement.
- Invigorates the internal organs, reduces fat, effective for
diabetes and stimulates the entire nervous system.
- It also stimulates the gastric fire and , and removes all
the diseases of men.
- The pose is particulary effective for combating menstural
irregularities and pain, anaemia and relieving constipation.
There are two asana for stretching the spine.
The Forward Bend (Paschimothana Asana)
Description of the asana
- From a lying position, with your arms straight out behind
you, inhale and come up to a sitting position. Point your feet
at the ceiling and pull the flesh of your buttocks out from
underneath you, so that you are sitting directly on the pelvic
bone. Stretch your arms above your head, lengthening the spine.
- Pulling the abdomen in, exhale and fold forward from the
pelvis, leading with the chest and keeping your back straight.
Bring your chin toward your shins and your chest toward your
thighs. Don't bend from the middle spine.
- Continue right down and hold on to whichever part of your
legs or feet you can comfortably reach without bending the
knees. With practice, you can warp your index fingers around
your big toes and bring your elbows down to the floor, or
stretch your arms out over your feet, as shown right.
- In the position, breath deeply, feeling yourself advancing
forward a little more every time you exhale. Hold for three to
four deep breaths at first gradually increasing the number as
you become relaxed in the pose. When you release the position,
reach forward as you come up.
Cobra (Bhujanga Asana)
Increases flexibility, rejuvenates spinal nerves and brings
a rich blood supply to the spinal region. Activates and
energizes the upper areas of the body like the chest,
shoulders, neck, face and head, giving a youthful appearance.
Corrects various abnormal troubles like constipation,
indigestion and increases appetite.
It has some special benefits for women. Helps relieve
problems of the uterus and ovaries and menstrual problems. A
regular practice of this asana makes child birth easy.
Description of the asana
- Lie down with your legs together and your hands palms down
under your shoulders. Rest your forehead on the floor.
- Inhaling, bring your head up, brushing first your nose, then
your chin against the floor Now lift'up your hands and use your
back muscles to raise your chest as high as possible. Hold for a
few deep breaths then, exhaling; slowly return to position 1,
keeping your chin up until last.
- Inhaling, come up as before, but this time use your hands to
push the trunk up. Continue up until you are bending from the
middle of the spine. Hold for two or three deep breaths, then
exhale and come slowly down.
- Inhaling, raise the trunk as before, but this time continue
up and back until you can feel your back bending all the way
down from the neck to the base of the spine. Breathe normally.
- To complete the asana., walk your hands in toward your body,
straighten the arms, and lift the pelvis slightly. Separate the
legs, bend the knees and, pushing out the chest, drop the head
back and touch the feet to the head. Breathe normally, then
slowly come down, as before.