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A Complete Yoga Guide for a Healthier Life

To be awake is to look within. When you work on your inner self no outside energy can influence your peace of mind and to achieve that you need to integrate your mind, spirit and body through the practice of yoga.

As we all know Sunday will be celebrated as International Yoga Day, and the practice of yoga is the best way to deal with stress and strive for a disciplined life. Yoga was started in Northern India over 5,000 years ago and currently it is being practiced all over the world. So with Yoga gaining its popularity around the world and if you’re thinking to start practicing yoga daily then this complete guide will help you. Jaipur Beat in association with the Yoga practitioner Snehal Singh presents few asanas for you to commence on a new journey towards a healthier life.

  1. Vrikshasana (Tree pose)

3. Vrikshasana

Steps for Asana:

  • Stand straight with hands at your side and feet close.
  • Concentrate on a point 5 ft in front or on floor. Slowly, fold your right leg and hold the ankle. Place the foot on the root of left thigh.

(Do not place the foot on knee joint)

  • Maintaining balance, inhale and raise your arms and join the palms.
  • Stay there for 30-60 sec. And slowly come back. Repeat the same on other side.

Benefits:

It brings calm and steadiness in mind, improves concentration and memory.

Tones thighs, arms and abdominal muscles.

 

  1. Trikonasana (triangle pose) 

2. Trikonasana

Steps for asana:

  • Stand with feet about 3-4 feet apart. Hands at your side.
  • While inhaling raise your arms at your sides at shoulder level, parallel to ground.
  • While exhaling bend from your waist to right. Touch your right hand to right ankle. Try to not lean forward
  • Stay there for 15 – 30 sec. Then, while inhaling bring your arms parallel to ground again. Repeat on the other side.

Benefits: 

Massages abdominal organs and improves digestion.

Strengthen knees and ankles.

Relieve stress and anxiety.

 

  1. Adho mukh savasana (Downward dog)

4. Adhomukhsavasna

Steps for Asana:

  • Come onto your fours. Form a table such that hands and feet form the legs of the table.
  • While exhaling lift the hips up, straightening the knees to form an inverted V-shape with the body.
  • Keep hands shoulder width apart, feet – hip width apart and toes pointed ahead. Lengthen your spine.
  • Hold the pose for 30-60 sec. Take long deep breaths. Then return back and relax.

Benefits: 

Lengthen the spine and improves posture.

Strengthen and tones muscles of arms, shoulders and legs.

 

  1. Ardha Matsyendrasana (Lord of fish pose)

5. Ardhmatseyndra asana

Steps for Asana:

  • Sit with your legs extended. Fold your right leg and place the foot near to left thigh crossing the left leg. Knees facing the sky.
  • Fold your left leg and place the foot close to right hip. Knees facing front.
  • Keeping spine straight, place your right hand at the back. Inhale, raise your left arm and while exhaling twist to right side and hold right foot with left hand.
  • Keeping breathing slow and deep. Stay there for 15- 30 sec. Then repeat on the other side.

Benefits:

Stimulates digestive fire and is very beneficial in destroying toxic elements in the body.

 

  1. Uttanpadasana (Raised legs pose)

6. Uttanpadasana

Steps for Asana:

  • Lie flat on your back. Keep your hands at side with palms facing downward.
  • While inhaling, raise your legs up straight at 90° from ground.
  • Don’t lift your shoulders or lower body. Stretch toes downwards.
  • Stay there for 30- 60 sec.

Benefits: 

Tones and strengthens the pelvis, hips, lower back, abdomen and legs.

Corrects knee joint pain and back problems.

 

  1. Salamba Shalabhasana (Locust pose) 

7. Shalabhasana

Steps for Asana: 

  • Lie down on your stomach. Bring your hands in front and place it under your chin.
  • Fold your right leg from the knees. Pushing away the ground, raise your left leg.
  • Now, place the left thigh on the right foot. Adjust accordingly and breathe normal.
  • Stay there for 15-30 sec. Then relax and repeat on the other side.

Benefits: 

Reduces belly fat.

Tones arms, thighs and hips.

Therapeutic for back pain.

 

  1. Bhujangasana (cobra pose) 

8. Bhujungasana

Steps for asana:

  • Lie flat on the stomach with the legs straight, feet together.
  • Place palms flat on the floor at side of the shoulders.
  • Slowly raise the head, neck and shoulders. Straightening the elbows, raise the trunk as high as possible.
  • Gently tilt the head backward and hold the final position for 15-30 sec. And then relax.

Benefits:

Stretches chest and lungs, shoulders, and abdomen. Strengthen spine.

Tones the buttocks.

 

Happy International Yoga Day!

Credits for the blog : Snehal Singh @to_a_new_journey

(https://www.instagram.com/to_a_new_journey/)

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7 Yoga Poses for your go-to International Yoga Day Celebration

Yoga was originated in ancient India with a broad variety of yoga schools, practices and goals. The promotion of yoga has intensified since the establishment of the Ministry of AYUSH and June 21 was announced as International Yoga day.

International yoga day is tomorrow, if you’re thinking about perfecting your yoga poses, then you are at the right place. This blog is your escape for the perfect yoga poses along with the steps and benefits they entail.

 

VRIKSHASANA

asana1

The pose is known as ‘tree pose’ and this asana is practised to balance the body. It is one of the standing poses in hatha yoga and very popular in modern yoga.

How to do:

  1. Stand erect and drop your arms to the side of your body.
  2. Slightly bend your right knee and place the right foot high up on your right thigh make sure that the sole is placed firm and flat on the root of the left thigh.
  3. Your left leg needs to be absolutely erect. Once you have assumed this position, breathe and try to find your balance.
  4. Now inhale and gently raise your arms over your head and bring them together in namaste mudra.
  5. Look straight at a distant object and hold your gaze, this will help you maintain balance.
  6. Gently bring your hands down from the side and release the right leg.
  7. Comeback to the starting position of standing tall and erect as you did at the beginning of the practice. Repeat this pose with the left leg.

BENEFIT:

  1. It strengthens the spine while improving both balance and poise.
  2. It tones the leg muscles.
  3. The knees become stronger.
  4. It relieves those suffering from sciatica and reduces flat feet.
  5. It makes you stable, flexible and enhances your concentration.

Contradictions:

  1. Avoid practising this asana if you suffer from insomnia or migraine.
  2. People with high blood pressure should not raise their arms above their head. They can go for namaste mudra by joining their hands with their palms together in front of the chest.

 

UTTHITA TRIKONASANA

asana2.jpg
“UTTHITA” is a word derived from the Sanskrit language which means extended and “TRIKONASANA” it means triangle. Therefore, this pose is also called triangle pose and it is one of the poses from Ashtanga primary series.

How to do:

  1. Stand erect, feet together and hands up, your body with an exhalation lightly then jump with your feet 3-4 feet apart and raise your arms to the shoulder level with your palms facing the floor.
  2. Take out your right foot at 90 degrees and left foot slightly into 60 degrees. Make sure that both legs should be in one line.
  3. With exhalation rotate your torso to the right side and hold your right big toe from the right hand and stretch your left arm upwards and look towards your left palm and maintain the pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute or take 5 deep breathes.
  4. With inhalation come back to the initial position while your hands should remain at shoulder level.
  5. Now take your left foot out at 90 degree and right foot slightly in at 60 degrees, both legs should be in one line.
  6. Now with exhalation rotate torso to the left side and hold your left big toe with your left hand. Raise your right arm up and look upwards and look towards your right palm and stay there for 30 seconds to 1 minute or take 5 deep breathes.
  7. With inhalation come to the initial position keep your feet together and release your hands by the side of your body.

BENEFIT :

  1. This asana stretches and strengthens the thighs, knees and ankles.
  2. Stretches the hip, groins and calves and shoulders, chest and spine.
  3. Stimulates the abdominal organs.
  4. Helps to relieve the stress and improves digestion.

CONTRADICTIONS : 

  1. People suffering from diarrhea, headache and low blood pressure should avoid practising this asana.
  2. Also, people who are suffering from neck problems and high blood pressure, don’t turn your head up and continue looking straight ahead.

 

URDHVA MUKHA SHAVASANA

asana3.jpg

This asana is also known as  ‘UPWARD FACING DOG’ and it is commonly a part of the widely performed in Surya Namaskar (Sun Salutation). This is also a back bending asana in modern yoga.

How to do:

  1. Lie on your stomach, on the floor. Stretch your both legs backwards.
  2. Then, bend your elbows and spread your palms on the floor beside your waist so that your forearms are relatively perpendicular to the floor.
  3. Inhale, press your inner hands firmly into the floor, with an inhalation lift your torso up and try to look up at the sky and hold the pose for about 15-30 seconds with normal breathing.
  4. Keep the thighs firm and legs a few inches off the floor.

BENEFIT :

  1. Improves your body posture and strengthens the spine, the arms and the wrists.
  2. Stretches chest and lungs, shoulders and abdomen.
  3. Stimulates organs.
  4. Helps relieve depression, fatigue and sciatica. It is also therapeutic for asthma.

CONTRADICTIONS:

  1. People with back injury should avoid this asana.
  2. People with headache and women during pregnancy should not practice this asana.

 

JANU SIRSASANA

asana4.jpg

“JANU” is a Sanskrit name which means ‘knee’ and “SIRSASANA” means ‘head’. It is also known as head-knee pose and it’s a seated twisting and forward bending asana in Ashtanga yoga.

How to do :

  1. Sit on the floor with your legs straight in front of you. Spine erect and hands besides of your body. Bend your right knee and heel back towards your perineum. Rest your right foot slightly against your inner left thigh.
  2. Now inhale, raise your hands up and with exhalation bend forward to the left side from the base of the spine and try to reach out with your right hand to reach the inner left your foot and try to hold the left wrist from the right hand, maintain the pose for 5 deep breaths and with exhalation try to lengthen the spine.
  3. Then with inhalation release your hands and lift up your upper body and get back to starting position.
  4. Same we do with the other leg.

BENEFIT :

  1. All the forward bending asana calms the mind and relieves depression. This asana stretches the spine, shoulders and hamstring.
  2. Stimulates liver and kidney.
  3. Improves digestion and relieves anxiety.
  4. Therapeutic for high blood pressure and insomnia.

CONTRADICTIONS :

  1. People with asthma and diarrhea should not practice this asana.
  2. People with knee injury don’t flex the injured knee completely and give support to your knee on a folded blanket.

 

PASCHIMOTANASANA :
asana5

This asana is one of the widely practised asanas in Hatha yoga as well as Ashtanga yoga and also known as seated forward bending asana.

How to do :

  1. Sit on the floor with the legs stretched straight in front and place your palm on the floor by the side of the hips and take a few deep breaths.
  2. Exhale, extend your hands and catch your toes. Hold the right big toe between the right thumb and index and middle finger and the same with another side.
  3. Inhale completely, chest up, look up and with exhalation bend forward from the base of the spine, widen your elbows and try to touch your knee with your forehead and maintain this position from 1 to 5 minutes as per your capacity.
  4. An advanced practitioner can catch the outer sole and rest the chin on the shin.
  5. Exhale, release your hands and raise your head from the knee and relax.

BENEFIT :

  1. This Asana tones the abdominal organs
  2. Relieves the stress and calms the mind
  3. Tones the kidney and improves the digestion
  4. To reduce the belly fat women should practice this Asana after pregnancy
  5. This Asana also helps to cure impotency

CONTRADICTIONS :

  1. People with asthma and diarrhea should not practice this asana
  2. People with back injury perform this asana under yoga teacher
  3. Women shouldn’t practice this asana during pregnancy

 

SIRSASANA :

asana6

This asana is known as headstand and king of the asanas and commonly practised both in Hatha and Ashtanga yoga.

How to do :

  1. Spread a blanket fourfold on the floor and kneel near it.
  2. Rest your forearms in the centre of the blanket, your elbow should be in the line of your shoulder.
  3. Interlock your fingers right up to the fingertips so that the palms form a cup and fingers should be kept tightly locked.
  4. Rest the crown of the head on the blanket between both the palms and move your knee towards your head.
  5. Raise your knee and walk towards your head.
  6. Exhale, and gently lift the legs off the ground, then bent your knee and stretch your legs up and stand on the head and hold this position for 1 to 5 minutes with normal breathing.
  7. Exhale,  flex your knee and gently slide down to the floor in reverse order.

BENEFIT:

  1. This Asana relieves mild depression and calms your brain
  2. Enhances memory and hair growth and reduces hair-fall
  3. Strengthen arms and lungs and abdominal organs
  4. Improve digestion
  5. Increase confidence
  6. Therapeutic for insomnia and infertility

CONTRADICTIONS: 

  1. People with neck and back injury don’t perform this asana
  2. People suffering from high blood pressure avoid all the inversions
  3. Women during menstrual shouldn’t practice this asana

 

ADHO MUKHA VRKSASANA :
asana7

‘Adho’ is a Sanskrit word which means downward, ‘Mukha’ means facing, ‘Vriksh’ means tree.

Therefore this asana is called “downward facing tree pose” and “handstand”. This asana is a balancing asana.

How to do :

  1. Stand tall and hands beside your body facing a wall. Inhale, raise your arms up then exhale, bend forward and place your palms on the floor about a foot away from the wall.
  2. Distance between palms and shoulder should be the same and keep your arms fully stretched.
  3. Take your legs back and bend your knee, exhale here and swing your legs up against the wall and balance here
  4. Look between your hands and stay there for a minute with normal breathing
  • After mastering this position try to do this in middle of room .keep your legs fully stretched and toes pointing up and lift your head as far up as you can
  • Flex your knee and gently come down to the floor in reverse order

BENEFIT :

  1. This pose develops the body harmoniously
  2. Strengthen the shoulders, arms and wrist
  3. Expand the chest fully
  4. Enhance your confidence
  5. Increase the reverse blood flow which energizes the mind
  6. Increase your concentration

CONTRADICTIONS :

  1. People with back and neck injury don’t perform this Asana
  2. People suffering from high blood pressure avoid all the inversions.
  3. Women in menstrual and during pregnancy avoid this asana.
  4. People with a weak shoulder should avoid this asana.

Disclaimer: Do not perform these Asanas without the supervision of the trainers/experts.

Credits for the blog : @jonaa_yoga (https://www.instagram.com/jonaa_yoga/?hl=en)