Viparita Karani: Legs Up The Wall Pose
Viparita karani (vip-par-ee-tah car-AHN-ee) is a gentle restorative pose. This slightly inverted pose can ease busy mind chatter and may relieve uncomfortable symptoms like tension and menstrual cramps. You may enjoy practicing this pose with a block, folded blanket, or pillow under your hips to lift your hips above the plane of your heart.
- Viparita: reversed/inverted
- Karani: doing/action
- Relieves tired feet and legs.
- Gently stretches the hamstrings and legs.
- Can relieve discomfort in the lower back.
- Thought to calm the mind.
- Thought to ease symptoms of anxiety and stress.
- Shoulder stand on the wall
- Dragonfly on the wall
- Figure four on the wall
- Place a pillow, bolster, or folded blanket under your hips to release the hamstrings and low back.
- Gently lower your feet out to the sides so your legs make a wide “V” shape for dragonfly on the wall.
- Place a rolled up blanket under your neck for additional support.
- Loop a strap around your thighs to allow the legs to relax more deeply.
- Begin seated beside an open wall, with your hip and shoulder against the wall.
- Gently lower your torso down to the ground as your legs lift up against the wall.
- Option to wiggle closer to or further away from the wall to your comfort level.
- Option to place a block, pillow, or folded blanket under your hips to release any discomfort in the low back or hamstrings.
- Allow your head to rest on the ground or a pillow and place your arms wherever they are most comfortable.
- Stay anywhere from one to 15 minutes.
- To release, push the bottoms of your feet into the wall and lift your hips slightly. If using a support, move the support out of the way. Gently roll to one side and stay for a few breaths before returning to your seat.
Ardha Chandrasana: Half Moon Pose
Ardha chandrasana (ARE-dah chan-DRAHS-anna), or half moon pose, is a challenging balance posture. However, there are many modifications and variations to make the shape accessible to everyone.
Philosophy + Origin
The Sanskrit word “chandra” is often translated simply as “moon,” and actually has a much richer meaning. More than just the moon, the chandra refers to something that is glittering and shining, a brilliant object that is illuminated by light or emanating light on its own. In many traditional yogic texts and stories, the moon symbolizes one half of the two polar energies in the body. The moon, which is the feminine or dark aspect, is nurturing, tranquil, and receptive.