Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana: Revolved Half Moon
Parivrtta ardha chandrasana (PAHR-ee-VREE-tah ARD-uh chan-DRAHS-uh-nuh) requires balance, focus, strength, and flexibility. Maintaining the posture requires balancing energy in the legs and arms, the upper body and the lower. Revolved half moon pose evokes the cooling, rejuvenating qualities of the moon.
Philosophy + Origin
The state of the moon can influence an individual’s state of being. On full moon days, for example, you might feel headstrong and overly ambitious. New moon days can leave you feeling unmotivated. These extremes balance out as the moon makes its way from new to full. Revolved half moon pose asks practitioners to find balance by equally using the arms, legs, upper body, and lower body. When found, this physical equanimity brings mental balance, which can lead to discovering the “sweet spot” in all aspects of life.
- Place a block under your bottom hand to bring the ground closer to you.
- Press the sole of your raised foot firmly against a wall for support and to engage the leg muscles.
- Hover your lower hand off the floor, bringing elbow to your knee or hand to your heart.
- Keep your gaze to the side or downward to release your neck.
- Begin in a lunge with your right foot forward. Shift your weight into your right foot and press into grounded airplane with hands on the floor or blocks, right under your shoulders.
- Lengthen through the crown of your head and reach through your lifted heel.
- Place your left hand under your chest and place your right hand to your right hip. Draw your right hip back in space.
- Turn your chest to the right.
- Extend your right arm to the sky.
- Option to turn your gaze to your lifted arm.
- Hold for up to 10 breaths. Release to a forward fold for a few breaths then step back to lunge and repeat on the other side.
- Half moon | Ardha chandrasana
- Standing split | Eka pada ardha uttanasana
- Revolved triangle | Parivrtta trikonasana
- Revolved dancer pose | Parivrtta hasta padangusthasana
- Revolved sugarcane pose | Parivrtta ardha chandra chapasana
- Parivrtta = revloving
- Ardha = half
- Chandra = moon
- Asana = pose
- Strengthens standing leg.
- Improves core strength and balance.
- Opens shoulders, hips, and pelvis.
- Revitalizes the mind.
- Balances energy.
- Improves focus and mental clarity.
Salamba Bhujangasana: Sphinx Pose
Related to the cobra pose, the sphinx pose is a more restorative way to stretch and lengthen the spine. Salamba bhujangasana (SA-lumb-aa BHU-jung-AAHS-uh-nuh) is one of the gentlest backbends in a yoga practice, making it a great entry point for beginners and an effective warm up at the beginning of practice. Sphinx pose is also a great way to reduce stress and stimulate the abdominal organs.
Philosophy + Origin
Cobras and snakes can evoke feelings of fear, discomfort, and disgust. But in Vedic traditions, the cobra symbolizes overcoming and mastering fear. Nataraja, an incarnation of Shiva, is often portrayed with a cobra draped around his neck. The cobra’s venom is said to represent avidya, or ignorance — the veil that prevents us from recognizing universal truths. By mastering fear and learning to see beyond the surface we can come to know freedom, or liberation.