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.

Surya Namaskar – Sun Salutation

Names

Surya Namaskar, Sun Salutation

How to perform Surya Namaskar

Stand straight in Samastithi. Check which of your nostrils is more active by holding your hand in front of your nose. Now bring your arms in front of your chest in Namaste position.
With inhalation bring your arms up over your head. Bend backwards and bring your hips to the front with your body weight on your toes. Keep your knees straight. Look backwards and keep deep breathing.


With exhalation bend forwards while keeping your back and elbows straight. Place your hands next to your feet. Now bring back the leg of your active side back. If your right nostril is more active bring back your right leg. Your left knee should now be directly above the left foot. Bring your pelvis down as much as you can and keep the right leg straight and don’t place it on the ground.


With inhalation bring the left foot back next to the right foot into Chaturanga Asana. Hold the position and keep your body in the air. During that keep arms, back and knees straight.
If your shoulders allow it lean your body weight forward with exhalation. Hold your breath and with an inhalation go into Bhujangasana. For that put down your legs and hips on the floor. Your hands should be beside your chest now. Bring your pelvis down but your upper body up so that your navel doesn´t touch the floor anymore. Look straight up to the ceiling. Open your chest wide and breathe deeply. Make sure that you are not hanging your body weight on your shoulders.


With exhalation you bring your head back into the normal position and look straight. With inhalation twist your head to the right side and look at your left heel. With exhalation bring your head back and repeat the same on the left side.


Now push your body back and go into Adho Mukha Svanasana with inhalation. For that you keep your arms straight and with the strength of your shoulders you bring your hips up into the air. You lower the upper body and push your hands into the floor. Your buttock should be the highest part of your body and point to the ceiling.

With exhalation go back into Chaturanga Asana.


Now bring your right foot into the front between your arms. Your right knee should be directly above the right foot. Bring your pelvis down as much as you can and keep the left leg straight without touching the ground.


With inhalation bring the left foot next to the right foot between your arms and straighten your knees. Bring your upper body close to your legs so that your nose is touching the knees.

Bring your palms together in Namaste position. Straighten your elbows and slowly come up with inhalation and your back straight. Bend backwards as before and come back to Samastithi.


Now you have completed the first round of sun salutation!

Benefits of Surya Namaskar

This is a very beneficial position for your whole body. You may do it to warm up at the beginning of your yoga practice. It is also a great exercise for children as this position strengthen the muscles and gives the body more room to develop the organs and to grow.
Sun salutation also helps to prevent many digestive issues and stomach problems. If you suffer from irritable bowel syndrome, sun salutation may help you as it regulates the movement of the bowels.


A regular practice of this sequence of yoga postures will strengthen your arms, shoulders, chest and abdominal muscles and help you to reduce fat especially on your belly.
It will also keep your whole body flexible.


If you practice this pose regularly it will help you to calm your mind, to improve your focus and concentration. Those effects work against depression, bipolar disorder, insomnia, headache, migraines and stress. It is also good for your memory and nervous system.


This exercise also has a lot of benefits for women. Regular practice of sun salutation helps against irregular menstruation and prevents pain during pregnancy. Sun salutation can also help to make the birth of the child easier.


Also your cardio system will be influenced in a positive way. Your blood will get more oxygen and so helps the body to get rid of toxics.


It is also very good for the coordination between mind and body and therefore recommended for seniors.


When you suffer from diabetes make this pose to reduce the sugar in your blood and to regulate your insulin level.


Your skin will become better, it will shape your muscles and will make you look and feel younger. It’s a wonderful exercise for beauty!


This exercise is a complete workout! Even when you don´t have much time for yoga or a workout, just practice sun salutation in the morning and it will give you a complete workout for your body.


In total a regular practice of Surya Namaskar keeps you happy and healthy!

Focus Points

Keep your feet together and knees straight while standing. Always keep your body weight on your toes. Focus on your body and the muscles you are working on while performing the posture.


Performing sun salutation slowly makes you understand the position and how it works and for sure it is more beneficial than doing it fast.


Make sure that you breathe very regular and perform the position in a steady rhythmus.

Tips and Help

For an easy version you can place the knee of the stretched leg on the floor when you finished the forward bending and you bring one leg back.


You can also lie on the floor after Chaturanga Asana. Lift your buttocks up and come into cobra after that.

If you are suffering from shoulder pain, place your arms next to your chest. Lift your chest, head and your arms and hands from the floor. The rest of the body lies on the floor as a substitute of the full cobra.


Coordinating with the breathing makes it easier to perform the posture.


Advanced yoga practitioners can try to keep the body up in the air during the whole sequence of poses. Only your hands and feet should touch the floor.


And if you want it to be more difficult, just do it more slowly and hold the single yoga poses a longer time.

Sukhasana – Sit Easy Pose

How to do Sukhasana

Sit down comfortably on the floor and cross your legs. Keep your back and spine straight and relax your shoulders.

Benefits of Sukhasana

This yoga pose is frequently used in meditation and breathing practice. It helps you to relax and calm body and mind.

Focus Points

In this yoga posture you should be able to relax. The focus lies on sitting comfortably, with the shoulders relaxed and no pain or effort in any of your body parts.

Tips and Help when Facing Problems

If you are not able to bring your legs together very closely to the body, do not force yourself but keep them as close as it is comfortable for you. You can support your knees with cushions if necessary.

You can also place a cushion under your tailbone which will help you sit straight and reduce the pressure on your lower back.
If longer sitting is still difficult for you, try supporting your back by leaning against a wall.

When to Avoid Sukhasana

If you have knee problems, pain and weakness in the knees or if your ligaments are worn or torn, you should avoid this position. If you are in doubt, please consult your doctor or physiotherapist and let your yoga teacher know about it. 

Siddhasana – Muktasana

Names

Siddhasana , Muktasana, Accomplished or Expert Pose

How to Perform Siddhasana

Sit with your legs stretched in front of you. Bend your left knee and place your left heel on your perineum. Bend your right knee and place your right heel over your left heel.
Sit straight, relax your shoulders and place your hands facing upwards in the Anjali Mudra on your heels.

Benefits of Siddhasana


Names

Siddhasana , Muktasana, Accomplished or Expert Pose

How to Perform Siddhasana

Sit with your legs stretched in front of you. Bend your left knee and place your left heel on your perineum. Bend your right knee and place your right heel over your left heel.


Sit straight, relax your shoulders and place your hands facing upwards in the Anjali Mudra on your heels.

Benefits of Siddhasana


Siddhasana is said to stimulate sexual energy. Additionally it is good for the reproductive organs and the gynecological system.


The accomplished yoga posture is used in meditation as it helps the mind to focus. It is a pose that benefits your nervous system and helps regulating your blood pressure.

Focus Point

When in the pose, you should be able to feel a slight pressure on your perineum.

Tips and Help

Whenever you feel tired in the pose and feel strain in your legs, exchange them by putting the right foot below the left one or the other way around.

When to Avoid Siddhasana

If you have knee problems, pain and weakness in the knees or if your ligaments are worn or torn, you should avoid this position. If you are in doubt, please consult your doctor or physiotherapist and let your yoga teacher know about it.

Focus Point

When in the pose, you should be able to feel a slight pressure on your perineum.

Tips and Help

Whenever you feel tired in the pose and feel strain in your legs, exchange them by putting the right foot below the left one or the other way around.

When to Avoid Siddhasana

If you have knee problems, pain and weakness in the knees or if your ligaments are worn or torn, you should avoid this position. If you are in doubt, please consult your doctor or physiotherapist and let your yoga teacher know about it.

Pawanmuktasana – Wind Releasing Pose

Names

Pawanmuktasana, Gas Releasing Pose, Wind Releasing Pose

How to perform Pawanmuktasana

Lie in Supta Samastithi, with your body flat on the floor. Check to see which nostril is more active, bend that knee, interlace your fingers and grab your lower leg just under your knee. With exhalation you now pull your leg towards your chest and at the same time lift your head and touch your knee with your nose.


Slowly bring your head and leg back to the floor while inhaling. Relax and then repeat the exercise with the other leg. Repeat it eight to ten times.

Benefits of Pawanmuktasana

This pose regulates the Apana and the Samana Vayu, the air in your intestines and your digestive system.


Through the pressure on these areas, the posture releases gas which is stuck in stomach and intestines. It is thus a great posture against a bloated stomach.


It stimulates digestion and thus prevents and cures constipation.

The exercise of this yoga position helps your heart to pump the blood through the body.
Your belly muscles are tightened and if you do this yoga asana regularly and with many repetitions, you will soon realize how you reduce excessive belly fat and make your belly slim.

Focus Points

Make sure your second leg remains straight on the floor. Do not bend your second knee and don’t lift your leg from the floor.

Tips and Help

This yoga exercise is most effective, if you do it slowly and with a rhythm. This is why it is best to exhale once when you come up and inhale once when you lie back down.


If you are suffering from constipation, perform this pose after drinking some water. It will help your bowel movements and additionally stimulate digestion.

Nadi Shodhana Pranayama

Names

Nadi Shodhana Pranayama, Channel Cleaning Breath

How to perform Nadi Shodhana Pranayama

Sit in Siddhasana , Vajrasana, Padmasana or Bhadrasana with a straight spine, looking to the front. Your head should be in one line with your spine.

Make the Vishnu Mudra with your right hand by placing the tip of index and middle finger on the root of your thumb.


Check which of your nostrils is active. If you are breathing from the left nostril, close your right nostril with the thumb of your right hand.

Inhale deeply through the left nostril. After completing the inhalation close the left nostril with the little and the ring finger and open the right nostril to exhale from the right side.


After exhalation from the right, continue with inhalation from the right nostril. Then close the right nostril with the thumb, open your left nostril again and exhale.

Now you have completed one round of Nadi Shodhana. Repeat this pranayama exercise 5 to 10 times.

Benefits of Nadi Shodhana Pranayama

The name Nadi Shodhana comes from the Sanskrit words “nadi” and “shodhana”.
Nadi means energy channels while Shodhana means cleansing, purifying or purification. Nadi Shodhana thus means purifying the energy channels. This makes the Prana, the life force, flow strongly and in a healthy way.


It does not only have energetic effects though! Nadi Shodhana also cleans the body of toxins and helps you to relax. This relaxation is good for your heart, as the heart beat slows down and in general good against physical and mental stress.


People suffering from migraine have also reported that through the practice of being calm, stress-related migraines have not further appeared. Even people who have been diagnosed with bipolar syndrome got relief through the calming effect of the yoga exercise.


And last but not least it is a great exercise that you could even do at work – whether during usual working hours or in your lunch break!

Focus Points

In this breathing technique you should not hold your breath. Concentrate on relaxing and breathing continuously in a steady rhythm.

Tips and Help

If you cannot sit in any of the poses listed before you can do this pose also when you are sitting on a chair or in any comfortable sitting posture.

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.

Modak Kriya – Laddu Gesture

Names

Modak Kriya, Laddu Gesture

How to perform Modak Kriya

Stand straight with your shoulders relaxed. Stretch your hands to the front with your elbows straight. Open and close your fists one time with your thumbs inside and one time with your thumbs outside of the other fingers.


Count how many times you open and close your fists.


In the next step you stretch your hands to your sides and repeat the same exercise and count so that you have done it in an equal amount to the front and to the side.

Benefits of Laddu Gesture

This yoga pose obviously strengthens your complete arms which you will feel soon after starting the exercise. It makes the muscles of your hands, wrists, arms, shoulders, neck and upper back strong.


It makes your blood circulate strongly and thus helps to regulate your blood pressure to a normal level.

Focus Points

Don’t bend your elbows and keep your arms parallel to the floor. Only in this way you get the full benefit of this exercise.

Gulfangushthasana – Heel to Toes

Names

Gulfangushthasana, Heel to toes pose

How to perform Gulfangushthasana

Lay in Supta Samasthiti and check from which nostril you are breathing.

If it is the right nostril, place your right heel in between the big and the first toe of your left foot.

Grab your right heel with the toes of the left foot and while you keep on lying straight, you lay both feet to the right side.


Count until ten, then bring them up again and place your right foot back to the floor.
Repeat the exercise with the other leg.

Benefits of Gulfangushthasana

Gulfangushthasana, as basic as it may seem, is a very effective exercise.

It is good against lower back pain, slip disk problems, sciatica pain and even malposition of sacrum and hip.


Additionally to these benefits for your back, it is good for your ligaments and ham strings which get stretched in this yoga pose.


The muscles of your feet and calves also get unusual exercise and thus become more and more flexible.

Focus Points

While you are in the yoga position, focus on the twist in your pelvis and feel how your ligaments and muscles are stretched.


Keep your body as straight as possible.

Gulf Chalan – Ankle Movement

Names

Gulf Chalan, Ankle movement

How to perform Gulf Chalan

Sit in Dandasana with your legs and your back straight. Place your hands on your hip joints and move your toes forward and backward.

Benefits of Gulf Chalan

This exercise is very beneficial for your legs. It seems very easy and it is very easy but it is really a great workout for the muscles of your thighs and calves.

You can imagine that you can – with regular practice – reduce extra thigh fat and bring your thighs into a beautiful shape.


Additionally you will feel how it strengthens your lower back muscles.


This is also one of the best exercises for stress management and you can practice it literally anywhere! While you are in the office or travelling in train or plain. You don’t even have to get up!


Gulf Chalan keeps your ankles flexible and helps the blood flow through the veins of your legs which provides instant refreshment even after long periods of sitting.

Focus Points

You should really feel a very good stretch when pulling your ankles backwards and pushing them forward. If you don’t, pull and push them more!