Yoga Movements Explained

Here are some yoga movements that are great for many aspects of your health. If you experience any pain then stop. If you are in any doubts, contact your GP first.

Do not force these exercises. Move slowly and smoothly – never ‘bounce’ the movements as you are risking an injury.

Bhujangasana

This is good for the spine.

Lie flat on your stomach. Put your palms on the floor at shoulder level. Lift your head and chest off the floor and straighten your arms. The lower portion of your body, from belly down, should remain on the floor. Now stretch your head back and look up at the ceiling. Hold for a minute, and come down gently.

Yoga Movements ExplainedDhanurasana

This is good for your back muscles and spine.

Lie on your stomach face down. Bend your knees. Reach back with your hands to grab hold of each ankle with each hand. Pull your legs up from behind, and lift your head and torso up. Hold for one minute, and release yourself out of the stretch gently.
Padahastasana

This one is good for the spine and hamstrings.

Stand with your feet together. Raise your arms over your head and bend forward from your waist and touch your toes. You can grab hold of your ankles and try to get your forehead to touch your knees as you improve in this exercise. Hold for one minute.

Janushirsasana

Stretches hamstrings and back muscles and can massages your internal organs

Sit on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you. Bend you left leg at the knee so that the sole of the foot rests on the inside thigh of your right leg. Raise your arms and bend forward, and get hold of your toes on your right leg with both your hands. Try and get your face as close as possible to your right knee. Hold for one minute. Repeat on the other side.

Paschimottanasana

Stretches calves, hamstrings and spine and gives abdominal muscles a massage.

Sit up straight with your legs together and stretched out in front of you. Raise your arms up and bend forward and grab hold of your toes. Try to get your face as close to your knees as you can in a slow smooth way without bounching. Don’t allow your knees to lift off the floor. Hold for a minute.

Shalabhasana

This is good for toning the back muscles and strengthening the spine.

Lie flat on the floor on your stomach with your arms by your sides. Lift your head, torso, arms, and legs off the floor so that you are balancing on the lower part of your stomach. Hold for one minute and release gently. (Great for toning up the back muscles. Strengthens the spine.)

Utthita Trikonasana

Good for improving flexibility and balance.

Stand with your feet a little more than shoulder width apart. Turn the foot of your right leg outward, and the foot of your left leg a little inward. Raise your arms by your sides and hold them parallel to the floor. Bend sideways from the waist to touch your right foot with your right hand, with the left arm stretched toward the ceiling. Hold this position for a minute and repeat on the other side

Upavishtakonasana

Improves flexibility of the pelvic region and stretches the inner thighs.

Sit with your legs stretched sideways as far out as possible. Bend forward to try and touch your chin on the floor in front of you, while you grab hold of your toes on either side with your hands. Try to keep your spine as straight as possible, and try not to bend your knees. Hold for one minute and gently release.

Urdhwa Prasaritapadasana

Good for the abdominal muscles

Begin by lying on your back with your arms by your side. Place your hands, palms down, under your lower back. Tense your abs and tightening your leg muscles. Lift both legs off the floor to a height of about 30 degrees. Hold them there for about ten seconds. Now raise your legs to a height of about 60 degrees, and hold for about ten seconds. Now lift up to 90 degrees or straight up. Now reverse the process, coming down to 60 degrees, then 30 degrees, then down on the floor.

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