Vipareet Naukasana – Inverted Boat

Names

Vipareet Naukasana, Viprit Navasan, Inverted Boat Pose

How to perform Vipareet Naukasana

Lie on your belly with your feet straight and your arms straight over your head. Bring your arms to the sides of your head so that your ears are closed. Spread your fingers apart and let your tips of your thumbs touch each other.


With inhalation you now lift your hands, arms, head and chest as well as your legs up in the air. Hold your breath and balance your body on your stomach, pelvis and thighs. With exhalation you slowly move your arms and legs down and gently place them down on the floor again.

Benefits of Vipareet Naukasana

The inverted boat pose is one of the best yoga postures to reduce belly fat. It also strengthens your hips and ties which brings both, your buttocks and your legs, into a nice shape.


While strengthening the back muscles, it also positively affects your spine which comes in another position than its usual one. In this way the tissues and muscles around it remain flexible.


Through the movement in this yoga pose, the kidneys, thyroid glands and prostate gland get a soft and stimulating massage.


Through the opening of the chest, the lungs get space to expand fully and take more oxygen in. This helps you to breathe more deeply in your every day’s life, too, which is an immense help in relieving stress. People, who breathe deeply, keep their heart beat low and are less prone to stress.

When to Avoid the Inverted Boat Pose

People suffering from diarrhea, low blood pressure, insomnia or chest and heart pain should not practice Vipareet Naukasana.


Women should avoid this yoga posture during menstruation and pregnancy.
If you suffer from neck injuries, you should be very careful while practicing this pose and best of all, consult with your doctor first.

Uttan Mandukasana – Stretched Frog

Names

Uttan Mandukasana, Stretched Frog, Uplifted Frog

How to perform Uttan Mandukasana

The stretched frog pose usually follows directly on the sitting frog pose, Mandukasana.
Sit in Vajrasana on your heels. Open your feet apart and place your buttocks on the floor in between your feet. Now open your knees wide and let your toes touch each other in the back of your buttocks.


Sit straight, grab your right elbow with the left hand and vice versa, and stretch your thus folded arms up and behind your head.


You can include your breathing by inhaling when you move your arms upwards and bring your arms down again with exhalation.

Benefits of Uttan Mandukasana

Full stretch for nearly all your muscles. Your feet, calves, thighs and hips are stretched through the way you are sitting while your torso and arm muscles are stretched when you move your arms up and down.


Your organs get room to expand and work properly.


This yoga posture is good for lower back pain.

Ushtrasana – Camel Pose

Names

Ushtrasana, Camel Pose

How to perform Ushtrasana

Kneel in Vajrasana, then raise your body so that you do not longer sit on your heels. Increase the distance in between your knees and in between your feet so that they are the shoulder-width apart from each other.


Now place your right hand on your right heel and your left hand on your left heel. Push your pelvis to the front, your chest upwards and let your head hang back.


To come out of the yoga pose, raise your head up, bring your pelvis back, your chest back, then leave the grip of your heels and slowly sit back down in Vajrasana.

Benefits of Ushtrasana

Ushtrasana is a posture recommended for pregnant women as it alleviates delivery.
It is a yoga posture good for your abdominal area with the pancreas, bladder and liver. It gives a strengthening stretch to these organs and muscles. It brings flexibility to your upper body and gives room for your lungs to expand.

Focus Points

Press your heels down with the hands to give the proper stretch and push your pelvis to the front to increase the arch.


Don’t forget to breathe!

When to Avoid Ushtrasana

Do not perform the camel pose if you have injuries in the lower back or shoulder area. It is also not advised for practitioners who have high or low blood pressure or migraine problems.
 

Titali Asana – Butterfly

Names

Titali Asana Butterfly Pose

How to perform Titali Asana

Sit straight in Dandasana with your legs straight in front of you. Bend your knees, place the soles of your feet together and grab your feet with your hand. Pull them as close to your body as you can so that you feel the stretch.


Next step: start flying!


You move your knees up and down as high and low as you can.

Benefits of Titali Asana

The butterfly pose is good for the spine and lower back as well as your hip joints. It strengthens the muscles of your hips and legs and makes your hamstrings more flexible.

Focus Points

Sit straight and continue your normal breathing. You should feel the stretch in your legs. If not, pull your feet closer to your body and move your knees higher and lower.


Don’t make a hunchback and don’t jump with each movement of your butterfly wings. Just move the legs, not the complete body.

When to Avoid Titali Asana

If you are suffering from spinal injury or experience pain or discomfort in knees and hips while performing the posture, please consult your doctor and yoga teacher if it is safe for you to do the pose.

Swastikasana

How to perform Swastikasana

Sit in Dandasana, bend your left knee and place your left foot on the inside of your right thigh. Now bend your right knee and bring your right leg over the left one, placing your right foot on the inside of your left thigh.
Keep your spine straight and keep your head and neck in one line. Place your hands on your knees in the Gyan Mudra.

Benefits of Swastikasana

This pose is good for practicing meditation. It is a comfortable way of sitting to ease the mind and an alternative pose for Padmasana and Siddhasana . So when you meditate and feel uneasy in one pose, just change into another.

Focus Points

Keep your spine straight at all times during this pose. If your knees are hurting while doing this pose, change your legs when pain arises.

Supta Vajrasana

Names

Supta Vajrasana, Fixed Firm Pose, Reclining Adamant Pose, Pelvic Posture

How to perform Supta Vajrasana

Sit on your heels in Vajrasana. Lean back and gently place your elbows on the floor behind you. Now slowly lie back while being in Vajrasana so that your knees are still bending and your upper back lies on the floor. To come out of this posture lean your body on the left side and slowly come up.


To make this position more advanced you can combine it with Matsyasana by placing the top of your head on the floor and bringing your arms in front of your chest in namaste pose or by placing them straight over your head on the floor.


For an easier version of this position you can slide your feet next to your buttocks and place your hands next to your body or under your back.

Benefits of Supta Vajrasana

Supta Vajrasana stretches and strengthens the thigh muscles, abdominal muscles, makes your knees, spine and ankles more flexible and gives your calves and thighs a nice shape.
This pose is helpful with many problems like constipation, sciatica, gout, varicose veins, diaphragm, colitis, thrombosis and rheumatism.


You should practice Supta Vajrasana when you have lower and middle back pain as it gives a beneficial stretch to your back and also your hips.


It stretches and stimulates the internal organs especially the pelvic organs like pancreas, liver and kidneys.


This pose it especially beneficial for women because the stretch and the stimulation of the pelvic region has a good effect on the ovaries and fallopian tubes which prevents und cures menstruation pain, reduces the complications of pregnancy and constipation during pregnancy and it makes it easier to give birth to the child.

Tips and Help

Beginners should always use a pillow or a blanket under their back.
Pregnant women should also use a folded blanket or pillow under their hips and back and should open their knees wide.

When to Avoid Supta Vajrasana

Avoid this yoga posture when you are suffering from torn ligaments, knee injuries or an injured meniscus.

Purna Matsyendra Asana – Full Spinal Twist

Names

Purna Matsyendra Asana, Full Spinal Twist

How to perform Purna Matsyendra Asana

Sit in Dandasana with your legs stretched in front of you. Bend your left knee and place your left foot on top of your right thigh with the heel touching your belly.


Bend your right knee, place your right foot outside of the left knee with the sole on the floor just like in Ardha Matsyendra Asana.


The remaining steps are also the same:


With exhalation you twist your upper body and bring your left shoulder outside of the right knee. Place your left hand on the right foot and grab your toes. Place your right hand behind your back on the floor, about half a meter away from your tailbone.


Keep normal breathing and look back over your right shoulder.


Slowly come out of the posture and repeat it from the other side.

Benefits of Purna Matsyendra Asana

The full spinal twist enhances the blood circulation and stimulates your nerves. It is thus beneficial for your brain, too.


With Purna Matsyendra Asana you can burn fat and regain flexibility.


When performing this yoga posture you stretch and strengthen your thigh and back muscles, your shoulders and your knees.


Purna Matsyendra Asana is great if you have digestion or gas problems.

Focus Points

The left foot should be as close to your torso as possible and your right leg should stand straight, with the sole completely on the floor.


Concentrate on turning and twisting your spinal column as much as possible while keeping the back straight. Include your neck area by turning your head, too.

Tips and Help

Only practice brings perfection, so don’t worry if also in this pose you do not seem to bring your spine into the full twist in the beginning. You can start practicing Ardha Matsyendra Asana first and later practice the full spinal twist.

When to Avoid the Full Spinal Twist

People with spinal injuries such as slip disc in any part of the spine as well as people with knee injuries should avoid performing this yoga pose.

Prishtha Kartari – Back Clapping

Names

Prishtha Kartari, Back clapping

How to perform Prishtha Kartari

Sit in Sukhasana, Guptasana, Vajrasana, Bhadrasana or Padmasana. Sit straight, keep your arms and hands straight, and stretch them out to the front you’re your elbows straight. Your palms should be facing each other.


With inhalation you open your arms to your side and then further to your back. Clap behind your back without bending your elbows and while keeping your arms as high as possible.

With exhalation you bring your arms to the front again and clap again there. Repeat this until your arms are tired.

Benefits of Prishtha Kartari

This yoga practice is very good for your shoulders and the muscles in your whole upper and middle back region. It releases tension from these muscles and makes them more flexible.
This exercise for your back muscles can prevent back pain and also help if you are suffering from pain in that region.


Additionally the exercise opens your lungs and gives room for your respiratory system to expand.

Focus Points

While clapping you should keep your elbows straight and keep the arms in an angle of 90 degrees to your body. Of course this is not as easy in the back as it is in the front. The higher you keep your arms in the back, the more effective the exercise is.

Tips and Help

If you have difficulties clapping in your back, try to keep your spine straight, which generally makes it easier.


If you cannot clap but would like to get most of this exercise, you can move your arms to your back as high as possible and as far as possible, without clapping.

Prasthbadhasan

How to perform Prasthbadhasan

Sit with your knee bent and your soles flat on the floor. Keep your feet together and pull them as close to your perineum as you can.


Open your knees apart without moving your feet. Lean forward with your upper body and bring your shoulders and arms in front of your knees. Take care not to lift your buttocks off the floor.


Straighten your arms and try to grab your hands from your back.

Benefits of Prasthbadhasan

This yoga pose strengthens your arms, shoulder and neck muscles. It opens the chest and helps in achieving a good posture by making you stand straight instead of hunch-backed.
It additionally brings flexibility to the whole body.

Focus Points

The focus of Prasthbadhasan is of course to bring the hands together but before this step is achieved you need to concentrate on bringing the feet closer and your shoulders in front of your knees.


Take care that you sit with your buttocks on the floor.

Tips and Help

In the beginning you might have difficulties even bringing your legs close enough to your body. With regular practice and time however you will be able to push your shoulders more and more to the front. Keep on trying, you will succeed!

When to Avoid Prasthbadhasan

Do not go into this yoga posture if you have injuries of the shoulders.

Mushti Sanchalan – Fist Rotation

Names

Mushti Sanchalan, Fist Rotation

How to perform Mushti Sanchalan

Sit in Dandasana with your legs straight. Stretch your arms straight to the front and make fists by grabbing your thumbs with all other fingers. Rotate your fists 20 times to the inside and 20 times to the outside.

Benefits of Fist Rotation

If you do this exercise, you will immediately feel yourself, how it works with your upper back, your neck and your shoulders. Of course it is good for strengthening the muscles in your complete arms and your torso.


If you often have upper back and neck pain or even had a slip disc in your upper back, you should regularly perform this yoga asana and you will feel how you get relief through the strengthening of your muscles in that area.


It is one of the basic poses that is practiced for stress management as it releases tension from your neck area that is very typical for people who act under pressure.

Focus Points

Take care that your elbows, neck and spine remain straight while performing Mushti Sanchalan.

Tips and Help

If you have difficulties sitting with your legs and back straight in Dandasana for this pose, you can do it in any other sitting pose that suits you.


Children love this exercise and you can make a game out of it, seeing how long they can keep their arms up.