Sitting in the Simple Cross-legged Pose (Sukhasana) is an easy alternative to the Lotus Pose (Padmasana). Although it’s also called Easy Pose, it can be quite challenging to sit comfortably in this pose for a longer period of time. This is because it’s hard to keep the spine straight. In this post, I’ll explain why this is so and what you can do about it.
What if you want do some exercising and stretching, but you have only limited time and room available, then what can you do? Answer: the Egyptian Sun Salutation! This (relatively unknown) sequence loosens up the spine and shoulders, strengthens your legs, deepens your breath and fosters the flow of energy in your body. A couple of rounds of the Egyptian Sun Salutation counts as a mini yoga session. This is because this sequence covers all six basic movements of the spine (forward and backward bend, side bends and twisting to both sides) You can also use it as a warming up before a longer yoga session or a workout. The Egyptian Sun Salutation is fairly easy to learn.
When you perform the classical Scorpion Pose (Vrschikasana), you’re bringing both your feat close to your head while standing on your forearms. This posture resembles the body shape of a scorpion, hence the name. The original Scorpion Pose is one of the most difficult yoga exercises to perform. But fortunately there is an easy variation of the Scorpion Pose, in which you’re lifting just one leg.
The Child’s Pose (Balasana) is a simple and easy forward bending exercise. This makes it a suitable counterpose for backbend exercises like the Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana) and the Camel Pose (Ustrasana).
“Nature had not intended man to work from eight in the morning until midnight without the refreshment of blessed oblivion” ~ Sir Winston Churchill
This posture is known as Savasana, which can be translated as “Corpse Pose” (sava = corpse, asana = pose). It’s the pose in which you can relax in between the exercises and at the end of a yoga session. Although the name might sound a bit creepy, lying in the Corpse Pose is very enjoyable and refreshing. To many practitioners, it’s the highlight of the yoga session.
I’ve found out that it’s also remarkably refreshing to relax in this pose for 10 – 20 minutes when coming home after work.
“The posture should be stable and pleasant” ~ Patanjali (Yoga Sutra 2.46)
Think of yoga and you probably picture someone sitting in the famous cross-legged Lotus Position. But not everybody is capable of sitting that way. Fortunately, being able to sit in Lotus Position isn’t really necessary for a successful yoga practice.
A proper sitting posture boils down to two essentials. First, the spine needs to be straight. This allows for a deep and complete breath. Second, the posture has to be comfortable, otherwise you’ll be distracted by sore buttocks, aching joints and weary muscles.
So it’s OK to sit on a chair, as long as you maintain a straight spine and sit comfortably.
As you tilt your knees from side to side, you gently twist the lower back. This reduces tension in that region.
This is an exercise from the Tibetan Kum Nye1 yoga. As you lie on your side, you lift arm and leg simultaneously. The movement is actually quite simple. But don’t underestimate this exercise! The real challenge lies in moving the limbs perfectly synchronously. And you may find that surprisingly difficult to do. The key is attention, you’ll need to concentrate well on the exercise. By doing so, you’re training both your attention and coordination skills.
While sitting in a straddle position, you are making a side bend. A regular performance of side bends keeps the spine supple.