Pose of the Week: Natarajasana

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Dancer Pose or Natarajasana in Sanskrit is another name for Shiva and his dance symbolizes cosmic energy. It’s a beautiful and graceful pose that really tests your balance. Finding your edge in this pose usually involves falling out of it. So…fall out of the pose and get back in. It’s a metaphor for life. Fall down eight times and get back up nine. And while you’re at it - bring on the cosmic energy!

Getting into the pose: Stand in Tadasana (Mountain Pose). Shift your weight into your left leg, lift up on the knee cap to keep the standing leg strong and bend your right knee. Bring your right heel towards your right buttocks and grab the inside of the food with your right hand. Kick your foot back into your hand while hinging forward and extending the left arm out in front of you. Continue to kick your foot back and up while reaching your arm forward to maintain balance and increase the backbend. The stronger you kick back, the deeper you will be able to get into the pose.

Alignment cues with right leg back: Find your drishti (one non-moving point you can fix your gaze on) to establish balance. As you kick back, square the hips keeping your right hip in line with your body rather than opening up to the right side. Allow the right shoulder to open and lift your chest as you continue to kick back and up. To avoid hyperextending the standing leg, fully engage the leg muscles and put a micro bend in the knee. FOCUS.

Benefits:

  • Stretches the shoulders and chest

  • Stretches the thighs, groins, and abdomen

  • Strengthens the legs and ankles

  • Improves balance