Tadasana – Palm Tree

Names

Tadasana, Palm Tree Pose, Mountain Pose

How to perform Tadasana

Stand straight with your feet together. Interlace your fingers and stretch your arms straight up. Your palms should face the roof. Come onto your toes and stretch your body up as far as possible.

Benefits of Tadasana

This pose gives your body a good stretch and thus corrects your posture. You stretch your arms, rib cage, thorax, your throat and chest. In this way it gives your lungs space to breathe and cleans your windpipe which makes it a very good exercise against breathing problems such as asthma and bronchitis.
Regularly performed, it also helps the growth of children.
The work of your calves strengthens your legs immensely.

Focus Points

This posture only brings its good effects, if you stretch up completely and as far as you can.

Tips and Help

If you want to intensify this yoga pose, you can bring your heals up first, then halfway down and up again. Do this movement up and down without touching the floor.
This will make it possible for you to stand in the yoga pose for a longer duration of time and you will feel soon how much more your legs need to work with this variation.

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.

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.

Pada Namaskar Asana

Names

Pada Namaskar Asana, Padangushtha Chalan

How to perform Pada Namaskar Asana

Sit in the Dandasana with your knees straight. Now bring your toes together so that it looks like you say Namaste with your fee. Now the soles of your feet are facing each other.

From this point you flex out your feet in the other driection. Repeat this 15 to 20 times.

Benefits of Pada Namaskar Asana

Pada Namaskar Asana is a very beneficial exercise for your inner thighs, inner calves and side knee muscles. It brings flexibility to your toes and ankles which helps preventing your ankles from of spraining or twisting. Your joints remain active and movement in all directions is practiced when you do this yoga pose.


It is one of those exercises that you can do even when you are at work – your co-workers won’t even notice your workout!

Focus Points

Your knees should remain straight throughout the exercise; otherwise you lose the effect for your calves and thighs.

Tips and Help

If you already suffer from ankle injuries or have pain, do not go to the extreme but do the yoga exercise slowly and until the point where it is still comfortable.
 

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.

Mrigasana – Deer Pose

Names

Mrigasana, Mriga Asana, Deer Pose

How to perform Mrigasana

Sit in Vajrasana on your legs with your back straight. Bring your arms to your back and stretch them out behind you. Now lean forward until your chest is on your knees.


You can now slowly lift your hips up, shifting your body weight more and more to your knees.


In the end you lift your feet off the ground, still balancing on your knees.
After a maximum of one or two minutes, you come out of the pose again.

Benefits of Mrigasana

This yoga posture strengthens your arms as you keep them stretched out to your back.
It opens your chest and throat and lets you breathe with more ease.


Your legs, through the act of balance get stronger, too, as well as your pelvis. You are contracting more muscles in that area as you may know!


This pose also helps regulating the air in your intestines.

Focus Points

First of all your focus will be your balance. After that you need to take care that your arms are still stretched out to your back and as straight as possible.

Tips and Help

Beginners should only lift the hips until they have found their confidence in this pose.
Lift your hips before lifting your feet off the ground, not simultaneously. This will help you in finding your balance.

When to Avoid the Deer Pose

Do not perform this yoga exercise if you have weak or injured knees.

Moola Bandha Asana

Names

Moola Bandha Asana

How to perform Moola Bandha Asana

Sit in Vajrasana and start spreading your knees and go as wide as you can.

Place your hands on the floor in front of you and while leaning your body weight on your hands you move your hands further forward.

You move forward until you are standing like a four-legged animal on your hands and knees. The toes of your feet should be touching each other.


Now bend your elbows and slowly place your lower arms on the floor. Now your hips and shoulders should be on the same height, so that your back is parallel to the floor.

Check once again if your knees can go any further apart and lean forward in the position to get your Moola Bandha.

Benefits of Moola Bandha Asana

Performing this posture automatically makes the Moola Bandha Mudra so that you don’t need to do any further effort.


Of course you already notice that regular practice will bring you much flexibility in your legs.
Additionally this pose strengthens your arms up to the neck, your back, your hamstrings, inner thighs, knees and ankles.


The Moola Bandha Asana also brings sexual energy back into flow.
It is thus a really wholesome exercise for your whole body and mind!

Focus Points

While leaning forward in the posture, take care to keep your head parallel to your trunk so that you get a stretch to your neck, too.

Tips and Help

If you have pain in arms and knees or in ankles and elbows, you can use a towel, a blanket, a small cushion or a folded yoga mat under your knees, ankles or elbows.

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.

Manu Asana – Tree Pose

Names

Manu Asana, Tapasana, Tree pose

How to perform Manu Asana

Check which of your nostrils is active and start with the active side.
If your right side is active, bring your right foot up with inhalation and place it on the inner side of your left thigh. Hold the pose and press your heel into your perinium. This pressure activates your Pingala Nadi.


When you have found your balance, place your hands in front of your chest in the Namaste pose and slowly bring them over your head.


Repeat the same exercise from the other side.

Benefits of Manu Asana

This yoga pose obviously helps you practicing balance. Additionally it stretches the whole body.


This lets you feel more alive and connected with your roots.
children love this pose – just like every balancing pose, as it is fun and exercise in one.

Focus Points

Of course you should try to stand in balance and not fall.


When you are in the tree pose, you should focus on stretching yourself completely. The sole of your foot should be flat on your inner thigh and as high as it can go up.

Tips and Help

If you cannot lift your foot up until the thigh or root chakra yet, you can also place it further down, on your calves. Just don’t place it exactly next to the knee as this can harm the knee joint.


In order to stand still, focus with the eyes on a point that does not move. Imagine you are a tree, growing its roots deep into the earth, stretching its branches towards the sky.

Kati Sanchalana – Hip Rotation

Names

Kati Sanchalana, Hip Rotation

How to perform Kati Sanchalana

Stand in Samastithi. Place your hands on your waist. With inhalation bring your pelvis to the front and with exhalation bring it back. Do this 10 times or more.


Do the same exercise to the left and the right side.


After this, rotate your hip five times clockwise and five times anticlockwise.
You can increase your counting freely with your wish.

Benefits of Kati Sanchalana

Kati Sanchalana is good for the flexibility of your hips. It helps losing weight as it is a good workout for the middle part of the body: hips, belly, thighs, and buttocks.

Even if you can’t do a lot of workout with your arms and legs because of weight problems, you can do this yoga pose and quickly reduce extra fat. The area of your hips is being toned and gets a nice shape.


Another reason why this pose is beneficial for losing weight is that it helps your digestive system through its stretch of the pelvic region.


The sexual organs are stimulated and with it your sexual energy will be enhanced.


You can even do this exercise together with you partner and place your hands on his waist and the other way round. It can increase intimacy among each other.


Kati Sanchalana is very beneficial for your hip muscles, hip joints and groin.
arthritis patients should do this yoga pose for improving their flexibility.

Focus Points

You can easily cheat yourself in this exercise by making small circles and not pressing your hips to the furthest. Focus on being in the movement with your complete attention!

Tips and Help

Don’t do fast movements. Make slow and steady circles and you will have a better effect.
If you are suffering from overweight you should support your back with your hands. You can take small breaks in between whenever you are exhausted.


Make sure you breathe in a steady rhythmus while doing this exercise.

When to avoid Kati Sanchalana

Avoid Kati Sanchalana if you have lower back pain, a slip disc, a sacrum displacement or diarrhea.