Ardha Chan­dra Cha­pasana

Steady your bal­ance and stay open to possibilities as you move step by step into Ardha Chan­dra Cha­pasana.

Yoga Journal - - PRACTICE WELL -

Ardha = Half · Chan­dra = Moon · Chapa = Bow · Asana = Pose Half Moon ( Sug­ar­cane) Bow Pose

BEN­E­FITS Opens your ham­strings, hip flex­ors, and chest; evokes a sense of free­dom and in­spires you to stand up for your be­liefs

IN­STRUC­TION

1 Come back into Parsvakonasana (Ex­tended Side An­gle Pose) on the left side. Place your right hand on your right hip and look down to the floor. In­hale deeply; step your right foot for­ward (about 6 inches) and walk your left hand di­ag­o­nally out to the left of your front foot (about 10 inches).

2 Spring off your right foot while ground­ing your left foot into the floor for bal­ance. Lift your right leg up be­hind you on a di­ag­o­nal into Ardha Chan­drasana (Half Moon Pose). Be sure your right leg is in line with your torso, so you don’t over­work your outer hip or in­ner thigh mus­cles. Keep your stand­ing leg en­gaged by lift­ing the mus­cles above your kneecap. Bring your right arm up ver­ti­cally and slowly take your gaze to your top hand. If you feel cramp­ing in your stand­ing leg, draw the left but­tock un­der to elon­gate the glute mus­cle.

3 Once you feel steady, bring your right knee to­ward your chest so you can grab the top of your right foot with your right hand.

4 When your hand has made a con­nec­tion with the top of your right foot, hold firmly and swing your knee back be­hind you. To fully open the pose, kick your right foot into your hand as though you’re try­ing to straighten your leg. With­out let­ting your right hip pop for­ward, draw your left but­tock un­der. Be sure your bent (right) thigh stays in line with your torso, so that you do not over­work your outer or in­ner thigh mus­cles. Hold here for 3–5 breaths. To come out, re­lease your foot and place your right hand on your hip; bend your stand­ing leg; pow­er­fully reach through your back leg, and place your right foot on the floor, re­turn­ing to Parsvakonasana. Re­peat on the other side.

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