MANOA YOGA CENTER
Ashley Ji, left, Linda Fancher and Laurie Freed practice Paschima Baddha Hastasana. CLICK FOR LARGE
Paschima Baddha Hastasana
(Back-bound hand pose)
"Paschima" refers to the west or back side of the body. In this pose, the arms are bound behind the back. Regular practice will bring freedom of movement to the shoulders and arms and will open the chest.
1. Stand with your feet together and extend your arms at the sides of the body with your elbows straight. Roll your shoulders back and down, and spread your collarbones. To help achieve this, rotate your arms out so the palms face forward. Take a few breaths, working to open the chest as you move your shoulder blades down and into the body.
2. With an exhalation, take the right arm behind your back and clasp the left elbow. If this is too difficult, catch the forearm or wrist. With practice, flexibility will improve.
3. Catch the right elbow with your left hand. Catch the wrist or forearm if there is stiffness.
4. Now re-lift the chest and spread your collarbones. Pull the shoulder blades down and into the body as you roll the arms out. Breathe with quiet determination to create more movement in the shoulders and space in the chest. Keep your lower back long and do not push the abdomen forward. After a minute, release and repeat, taking the left arm behind your body first.
and Shelley Choy
are certified Iyengar Yoga teachers and co-direct the Manoa Yoga Center at Manoa Marketplace. Visit www.manoayoga.com
or call 382-3910. Manoa Yoga Center, the authors and the Star-Bulletin take no responsibility for any injury arising from the practice of these yoga postures. Readers should seek a doctor's approval before commencing this yoga practice.