Yoga Poses: Chaturanga Dandasana
Take special precautions while doing any asana. If you are learning yoga, then take the advice of a knowledgeable person. Do not put any kind of force in the event of pain or unable to do so. Keep in mind that you will be able to succeed only with constant practice.
Brief Introduction Of The Chaturanga Dandasana
A significant Yoga pose, the Chaturanga Dandasana has many benefits for the mind and body of its practitioners. This pose gets its name from the Sanskrit words 'Chatur' which stands for ‘four’, 'anga' which stands for ‘limb’, 'danda' that refers to ‘staff’ and 'asana' which means pose. You can perform this pose for around 20 seconds every morning, and for 3 repetitions. You may also try this pose by raising your top leg in full half side plank.
How To Do The Chaturanga Dandasana?
Almost anybody can perform this Yoga pose, which has immense health benefits. Here is how you can perform this pose:
- Begin by getting into the Plank pose, which happens to be an exercise for conditioning the core and improving then balance of the body.
- Next, flatten your back, make the shoulder muscles firm and strengthen the muscles of your back. Once this is done, tuck in your tailbone and make the front and back part of your body firm.
- Then, you have to rock slightly forward over your toes, so as to first project your body ahead and then down.
- Look slightly ahead of you and keep the neck elongated. At the same time, keep the elbows near your torso, pointing back all the while.
- Now breathe out and lower your entire body similar to a plank over the floor. Meanwhile, you have to put your forearms to the floor at a 90° angle. As you lower, remember that you have to lower only to the point where your upper arms can remain parallel to the floor. Ensure that a 90° angle exists between your lower and upper arms. Raise the front section of your shoulders away from the surface of the floor during the entire time.
- Remember that this specific pose happens to be a part of sun salutation or Surya Namaskar. You may practice it by itself and hold on the same for around 10 - 30 seconds.
- Breathe out now and enter the upward facing dog pose or cobra pose. In case your back is strong enough to be capable of keeping it in plank and not getting collapsed, you may even revert to the plank pose while inhaling.
- You can make some variations to the pose, in order to make it easier and more basic, particularly if you happen to be a beginner. To begin with, try to bring forward your weight while bringing the chin and chest to the direction of the floor. You can go 50% until a right angle is formed in the arms that you have bent. Make sure that you have curled your toes and pushed them back. Once you feel comfortable in this posture, proceed to the following one.
- Still, there is another variation to this pose that you can try. Drop your knees onto the surface of the floor. Stretch one leg out behind you, with the legs engaged and toes tucked. Repeat the same technique of the first variation of the pose, which means bringing forward your weight and coming down halfway. Now return and use your other leg to repeat the same steps.
- Preparatory, Follow Up and Complimentary Poses
Some poses are complimentary to this asana, which include:
- Urdhva Mukha Svanasana (Upward Facing Dog Pose)
- Adho Mukho Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
- Bhujangasana (Cobra pose)
- Phalakasana (Plank pose)
Benefits Of The Chaturanga Dandasana
The asana has many benefits for the body:
- Tones the stomach – It can be very useful for practitioners who want to have a toned and flat stomach. But it must be remembered that one must not overdo this Yoga posture.
- Improves strength and flexibility – The pose is very useful for the shoulders, wrists and arms. It can make them stronger as well as improve their flexibility. It can even make the abdominal or core muscles much stronger, as well as strengthen many other muscles of the human body. This is a great Yoga pose to improve balance and core stability as well.
- Cures back problems – The daily practice of this pose can provide practitioners with relief from chronic back issues, and make their spinal muscles much stronger. If you are bothered by lower back pain due to sitting for a long time or poor posture, this specific pose can be extremely useful for you.
- Therapeutic benefits – The Yoga posture makes the body ready for arm balances and inversions. It can alleviate tension and stress, and help you deal with the problem of constipation. It is also a great way to improve the muscular and circulatory systems.
Precautions To Be Taken While Doing The Chaturanga Dandasana
- Although this pose is extremely useful for the body, there are some cautions and contraindications that you have to keep in mind. As you try to practice this pose, your back might tend to collapse while the tailbone might get raised. For optimal benefits, as you perform this posture, you have to make your body appear as a plank as far as you can.
- If you are pregnant, or have shoulder or wrist injury, you need to avoid it. Also, before you practice this Yoga pose or any other yoga posture for that matter, it is best that you get in touch with a trained Yoga practitioner for consultation, and know about the technicalities related to the same.
Although this pose is easier than other postures, you might face a difficult time to master it as a beginner. If you want to make it easy, you may begin with an Ashtanga namaskar or the chin – chest – knees. You have to drop to your knees, engage your core muscles and move your chin and chest towards the direction of the floor. Keep in mind that your shoulders need to be away from the ground and your chest must be open. In order to attain more comfort, you should try to make some basic variations.
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