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Yoga everyday: Here are some poses for self-care

On International Yoga Day, yoga expert Grand Master Akshar recommends some asanas that you must try daily to nourish the mind and body.

Published: 21st June 2020 05:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 20th June 2020 09:11 PM   |  A+A-

Balasana, or child's pose in Yoga.

Balasana, or child's pose in Yoga.

Yoga is the perfect tool for self-care. Simply observe the flow of your breath—inhale, retention and exhalation—to experience calmness and relaxation.

When you practice yoga asanas everyday, you are nourishing your external physical body and even your internal organs like liver, kidney, pancreas, heart etc. Yoga asanas lead to toning, body-conditioning and weight loss/gain and enhances the function of your organs. They can be started at any age and you will still experience the benefits of an increase in bone density, better immune system, improved blood circulation and much more.

Sukhasana (Happy Pose)
Formation of the posture

• Sit in an upright position with both legs stretched out in Dandasana
• Fold the left leg and tuck it inside the right thigh
• Then fold the right leg and tuck it inside the left thigh
• Place your palms on the knees
• Sit erect with spine straight
Benefits: The pose lengthens the spine, broadens the collarbones and chest; improves body posture, opens your hips. It calms the mind, reduces anxiety, stress and mental tiredness.

Ardha Padmasana
Formation of the posture

• Begin with Sukhasana
• Place your right foot on your left thigh facing upwards
• Push your knees to the floor
• Straighten your back and place your palms on your knees facing upwards
• Hold this asana for a while
• Repeat the same on the other side
Benefits: Considered one of the best meditation poses, it helps develop good posture. It opens up the hips. Mobilises the ankles and knees; stretches ligaments. Calms the brain; increases awareness and attentiveness. Eases menstrual discomfort. 

Vrikshasana
Formation of the posture

• Begin by standing in Samasthithi
• Lift your right leg off the floor and balance your  body weight on your left leg
• Place your right foot on your left inner thigh as close to your groin as possible
• Find your balance; join your palms in Pranam Mudra at your heart chakra.
• Inhale and lift up your arms
• Repeat the same with the alternate leg
Benefits: The pose tones and burns fat from the sides of your waist. Improves your sense of balance. Strengthens thighs and calf muscles. Mobilises knees. Reduces stiffness of shoulders.

Balasana (Child’s Pose)
Formation of the posture

• Kneel down on mat and sit on your heels
• Inhale and raise arms above head
• Exhale and bend your upper body forward
• Place your forehead on the floor
• Pelvis should rest on the heels
• Ensure that your back is not hunched

Naukasana
Formation of the posture

• Lie down on your back
• Lift up your upper and lower body to balance on your sitting bones
• Your toes must be aligned with your eyes
• Keep your knees and back straight
• Keep your arms parallel to the ground and pointing forward
• Tighten your abdominal muscles
• Straighten your back
• Inhale and exhale normally

Benefits: Strengthens lower back, stomach and leg muscles. Tones the waist and promotes weight loss. Removes gastro-intestinal discomfort and improves the functioning of the digestive system. Stimulates circulatory, nervous and hormonal systems, and eliminates lethargy.

Santolanasana
Formation of the posture

• Lie on your stomach
• Place your palms under your shoulders and 
lift your upper body, pelvis and knees up
• Grip the floor with your toes
• Straighten the knees
• Ensure that your knees, pelvis and spine are aligned
• Your wrists must be exactly below your shoulders with your arms straight
• Hold the final posture for a while

Benefits: Builds the core muscles; strengthens thighs, arms and shoulders. Makes spine and abdominal muscles robust. Improves balance in the nervous system. Stimulates the Manipura chakra. Energises the entire body and instils feeling of positivity. Develops a sense of inner equilibrium and harmony.

Must-Know Postures for Beginners 
Customise your yoga practice depending on your body’s physical capability. Many a time we become overenthusiastic and end up with an injury. Therefore, make your practice your own. It can be paced fast, slow or medium based on your level of comfort. Poses in yoga are divided into many levels and the following asanas comprise the Basic Level.

Balasana, Tadasana, Adomukhi Svanasana, Hastha Uthanasana, Bhujangasana, Ashwasanchalansana, Naukasana, Santolanasana, Siddhasana, Vrikshasana, Dandasana, Paschimottanasana are a few of the asanas that are important to learn as foundation poses. Breathing practice or Pranayama techniques can also be included in this list. Anulom Vilom, Kapal Bhati and Bhasthrika can be classified as beginner level for basic practitioners.
The writer is a yoga master, spiritual guide, lifestyle coach and yogapreneur



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