more poses

Standing Separate Leg Stretching Pose or Dandayamana-Bibhaktapada-Paschimotthanasana

I used to struggle with this pose but have advanced to being able to do the first of it. Turn 90 degrees on your mat, spread your legs out four feet keeping your heels inline if viewed from the side and hold your arms parallel to the ground. Pigeon toe your feet slightly and, keeping your gaze forward, bend with your lower back until you can reach down and grab the outside of your heels or the outside of the foot. Rock your weight forward onto your toes and try to touch your forehead to the ground. Yesterday, I was able to get my hair to dust the ground but have so far been unable to reach my forehead to the floor in this 1-minute posture that is repeated twice. I’ve been trying a wider stance, which helps but this remains a yoga goal of mine by the end of February 2011.

Triangle Pose or Trikanasana

This is known as the climax of the standing series and looks beautiful when properly executed. Put your hands above your head and, starting with your feet side by side, kick your right leg out 4-feet and let your arms fall parallel to the floor. Rotate your right foot 90 degrees and bend your right knee so that your thigh is parallel to the floor. In one motion turn your neck to your left shoulder and rotate your waist so your left arm is pointed towards the ceiling and your right arm passes in front of your knee and points between your big and index toe. During this posture you rotate your left hip down while pushing your right hip back with your right hand all while trying to look over your left shoulder. Hold this pose for one minute before rotating your waist back up, keeping your arms parallel to the floor and rotate your right foot so that it is parallel with your left foot. Rotate your left foot counterclockwise 90 degrees and repeat the posture on the left side. For some reason I find my pose looks and feels better on the left then the right side, although I am not sure why. This pose is repeated again.

Standing Separate Leg Head to Knee Pose or Dandayamana-Bibhaktapada-Janushirasana

Still standing parallel to your mat we lift our hands above our head, kick your right leg out 3-feet, rotate our right foot 90 degrees and our left foot 45 degrees. Suck in our stomach, roll our neck down so that we’re looking at our bellybutton and lean forward until our forehead touches our knee, It’s ok to bend your right knee but the left knee has to stay locked. If our right knee is bent we try straightening the knee with our forehead, all the while keeping our eyes open and breathing calmly. We keep our hands in prayer position as far past our right foot as possible although we can separate our hands if needed to maintain balance. This pose stretches our upper back and our arms but creates a choking sensation as we continue moving our forehead farther up our thigh. We stand up using our abs and repeat this posture for the left side. This posture is repeated again.