COURTESY MANOA YOGA CENTER
Work to join the palms without bending the elbows.
(Upward facing palms joined pose) »
Urdhva Namaskarasana arises out of Urdhva Hastasana, featured last week. In this pose, the sides of the body are fully stretched and the spine is lifted. The shoulders gain mobility, and stress in the neck is relieved.
1. Find an even surface and stand with the feet together. Look down at the feet and stay conscious of them. Line up the big toes and press the balls of the toes down. Press down as you spread your weight to the inner heels and outer edges of the feet. Distribute weight evenly.
2. Take your fingers to the thighs, and looking at the thighs, press them back until you feel the weight move to the front edge of the heels. Do not move the feet. Notice that weight on the heels cause the thighs to lift the kneecaps, and the legs become firm and straight.
3. Keeping the thighs back, place one hand to the lower belly and the other on the buttocks. As you lift the pit of the belly, draw the buttocks down. This places the pelvis in a vertical position, prevents the buttocks from protruding out and minimizes arching of the lower back. Keep the legs firm and straight.
4. Maintain the position of the feet, thighs and pelvis as you roll the thighs in so the knees point straight forward.
5. Spread and open the chest by turning the upper arms out, then bring the shoulder blades into the back. This is Tadasana.
6. Extend the arms forward, keeping them in alignment with the shoulders. Keep arms firm, straight and parallel, with fingers extended and palms facing.
7. Inhale and raise the arms vertically aligning them with the ears. Do arch the back. Maintain Tadasana in the trunk.
8. Exhale while joining the palms. Work to keep the elbows straight and the arms vertical by stretching the inner arms, from the armpits to the palms.
9. Work up to holding the pose for a minute while breathing evenly through the nose.
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.