Bhudanasana

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Bhudanasana translates as “mountain pose”.  It is different, but similar, to Adho Mukha Svanasana or “downward facing dog” (as discussed below).  Bhudanasana follows Bhujangasana or “cobra pose”; it is the eighth position in the Prana Vashya sun salutation.

How to get into the position

Starting, then, in Bhujangasana by lifting your waist / hips above the shoulder line and coming up on your toes, then exhale and come onto your heals to make a “V” shape with your body.  To deepen the posture, lengthen your tailbone away from the back of your pelvis to tilt the pelvis and lift the sitting bones toward the ceiling.

Bhudanasana should be held for five full breaths.  From a breathing perspective, this posture is an inversion and works the diaphragm cranial, improving lung mobility.  With each inhalation, press your palms and straighten your arms in line with your torso (vision point between your heals on the floor).  On each exhalation, press your heals to the floor ensuring your knees are straight.

When holding the position do not collapse your shoulders and do not allow your chest to come towards your thighs to work your arms (like when in downward facing dog).  In Bhudanasana the emphasis is stability, so the weight distribution between the palms and feet is more even as the torso is kept in line with the arms.  This allows you to observe the effects of the arms and legs on the spine as you hold the position.

Benefits

Bhudanasana stretches the shoulders, hamstrings, calves and glutes, and strengthens the arms and legs.  It has also been credited with improving digestion, relieving headaches, insomnia, back pain, and fatigue. Bhudanasana is also good for helping treat high blood pressure, sciatica, depression and asthma.  It also neutralises the spine between backbends and forward bends.

Contraindications

Do not attempt this position if you have any recent or chronic injury to the wrists (like carpal tunnel syndrome) or if you have high blood pressure or if you are pregnant.

Damian is an authorised teacher of Prana Vashya Yoga.  To book a class with Damian you can contact him by:

Email: damiancadmanjones@gmail.com

Tel: 0777 900 1896

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/queensroadyoga/

 

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Bhujangasana

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Bhujangasana translates as “cobra pose” (so-called as snakes can easily lift their head). This posture follows Sashtangasana or “position held by 8 limbs of the body”; it is the seventh position in the Prana Vashya sun salutation.

How to get into the position

Starting, then, in Sashtangasana with empty lungs, you inhale and come up on your palms keeping your weight on your thighs and open your chest by rolling back your shoulders, fixing your vision at the tip of your nose.

Benefits

Bhujangasana is a back bending pose which strengthens the spine and stretches the torso, chest, shoulders, and abdomen. Bhujangasana is also noted in the Gheranda Samhitha as a posture which increases body heat and destroys all diseases.

Contraindications

Do not attempt this position if you have any recent or chronic injury to the wrists (like carpal tunnel syndrome) or back or if you are pregnant.

Damian is an authorised teacher of Prana Vashya Yoga.  To book a class with Damian you can contact him by:

Email: damiancadmanjones@gmail.com

Tel: 0777 900 1896

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/queensroadyoga/

Sashtangasana

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Sashtangasana is so named for the eight points of contact with the floor—hands, feet, knees, chest, and chin and translates as “position held by 8 limbs of the body”.  This posture follows Dwipadasana or “plank pose”; it is the sixth position in the Prana Vashya sun salutation and its sequencing is significant.

How to get into the position

Starting, then, in plank pose (having exhaled all the air from your lungs) and ensuring your wrists are in line with the outer shoulders and knees under the hips, shift your bodyweight slightly forward and lower your knees, chest and forehead to the ground.  Keeping your chin and elbows tucked-in and raising your tailbone to the ceiling so that your hips are high (do not collapse your hips).

Do not attempt to breath in this position.  Sashtangasana is a transitional position in the Prana Vashya sun salutation and the breath must be held out because the diaphragm is trapped, and the chin is tucked in, so it is impossible to breath without straining internal organs.  This posture is designed not to support breathing but rather the control of the breath.

Prana Vashya Yoga considers the breath as the key channel in directing consciousness towards the pranaPrana is life and living refers to being present; not just physically but consciously.  Through control of breath in yoga, you can develop a healthy mind and body.  Such good health is a pre-requisite for understanding the Self.   So we work to increase our awareness and to develop control over mind and body.

If your shoulders and chest are tight and not open yet, then as a modification to the full Sashtangasana, try putting your chin on the floor instead of your forehead.

Benefits

This position is great for opening the hips, shoulders and chest and general upper body strengthening.  It also elongates the spine and is a gentle backbend.

Contraindications

Do not attempt this position if you have any recent or chronic injury to the wrists, elbows, shoulders, back or neck.

Damian is an authorised teacher of Prana Vashya Yoga.  To book a class with Damian you can contact him by:

Email: damiancadmanjones@gmail.com

Tel: 0777 900 1896

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/queensroadyoga/

Finding the right yoga mat for you

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Many people turn to yoga in the winter months as a relief from the everyday stress that piles up this time of year and there are a bewildering range of option when it comes to buying a new mat.

The feel that your mat gives you matters most. Textured mats and rubber mats are ideal for more active types of yoga — like prana vashya yoga — because of all the bending, sliding, stretching and balancing required. All your perspiration would make it difficult for PVC and foam mats to stay sticky. For lower-intensity yoga — such as ying yoga — comfort may be a higher priority as you’ll be on the floor for longer.

The yoga mat you choose should reflect your experience and dedication. Basically, if you’re new to yoga you should be looking more at basic, entry-level mat.  However, if you are an experienced yogi and/or dedicated then I would urge you to read the following link which is a good review of the more advanced-level mats: http://www.reviews.com/best-yoga-mat/

Damian is an authorised teacher of Prana Vashya Yoga.  To book a class with Damian you can contact him by:

Email: damiancadmanjones@gmail.com

Tel: 0777 900 1896

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/queensroadyoga/

Dwipadasana

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Dwipadasana (or “plank pose”) follows Eka Padasana; it is the fifth position in the Prana Vashya sun salutation. Dwipadasana  translates as “two-leg-position”.

Dwipadasana is an essential component of the Prana Vashya Sun Salutation and is used as a transitional pose in which the breath is fully exhaled. Dwipadasana is an arm balancing yoga pose that tones the abdominal muscles while strengthening the arms, spine and core.

How to get into the position

Starting, then, in Eka Padasana, you simply join your legs together behind you as you fully exhale all the air from your lungs.  It helps to have your fingers spread apart as wide as possible.  Do not let your chest or hips collapse; press your palms and press your feet to align your hips and otherwise bring your head and body into one straight line.  You should also fix your vision on the floor just ahead of your palms to prevent straining your knees whilst holding this pose.

Benefits

Dwipadasana increases muscle tone of the core muscles of the body, including the abdomen, chest, and low back. It strengthens the wrists, arms and shoulders, and also strengthens the muscles surrounding the spine.

Contraindications

Do not practice the full version of Dwipadasana if you have any issues with your wrists (like carpal tunnel syndrome). For those with such issues, you can either practice the position using your forearms or on your knees.

Damian is an authorised teacher of Prana Vashya Yoga.  To book a class with Damian you can contact him by:

Email: damiancadmanjones@gmail.com

Tel: 0777 900 1896

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/queensroadyoga/

Eka Padasana

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Eka Padasana follows Urdva Prasaritha Eka Pada Uttasana (or “upward-split-one-leg-stretch-position”); it is the fourth position in the Prana Vashya sun salutation.  Eka Padasana translates as “one-leg-position”.

Starting, then, with one leg raised in Urdva Prasaritha Eka Pada Uttasana, you should hold your breath, step back with the same leg that was raised in Urdva Prasaritha Eka Pada Uttasana, and place knee on the floor.  To complete the position you then free the hip by un-tucking the toes so the foot is flat to the floor before tucking the toes back under again (in readiness for the next position in the sun salutation).  The center of gravity is on the thigh; hence the name for this pose: Eka Padasana or “one-leg-position”.

Pay attention to the position of your forward knee in Eka Padasana; do not let your knee go in front of your ankle.  This is important because otherwise the thigh is not engaged and your will end up straining your knee and/or groin. 

If you cannot square your hips with your palms flat on the floor in this position, then come up on your finger-tips; it is important to keep the hips square for good posture.

Benefits

This pose stretches the thighs, groin, ankles, knees, and feet. It also improves posture and tones the pelvic muscles.

Contraindications

Avoid this asana if you have any issues with your lower back, ankle(s), or knee(s).

Damian is an authorised teacher of Prana Vashya Yoga.  To book a class with Damian you can contact him by:

Email: damiancadmanjones@gmail.com

Tel: 0777 900 1896

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/queensroadyoga/

 

Terms & Conditions and shala etiquette

Terms & Conditions of use of yoga studio

The Prana Vashya Yoga Studio (Leicester) is built upon a strong foundation of trust between the teacher and student.  By using this website and/or attending the Prana Vashya Yoga Studio, you agree to the following terms and conditions and you are respectfully asked to be mindful of the shala / yoga studio etiquette (see below).

Pre-booking of classes is essential due to space restraints in the yoga studio/ shala. Where possible, you must give 24 hours prior notice of cancellation for any pre-booked class, failing which an £8 cancellation fee is payable.

All new students are required to complete a “New Student Health Questionnaire” either before or during their first class.

Please inform the teacher of any injuries, operations, pregnancy or such-like.  If you are receiving any physiotherapy therapy treatment for injuries then you must inform the teacher and if you have been given a physiotherapy exercise routine, then you will be asked to briefly demonstrate the same to the teacher for clarity (so please arrive at the studio a little early to accommodate this).

All students must take full responsibility for their own health during the yoga classes, including any injuries.  To the fullest extent permissible by law, the teacher cannot be held sensibly liable for any personal injuries incurred by the students own recklessness or willful disregard of the teacher’s commands / instructions.

All students are welcome to leave their bicycles behind the side gate.  However, neither the teacher nor the Prana Vashya Yoga Studio can guarantee that members of the general public will not enter the same and cause damage to property and/or engage in criminal activity.  Accordingly, you leave your bicycle at your own risk.

If any provision or part-provision of this agreement is or becomes invalid, illegal or unenforceable, it shall be deemed modified to the minimum extent necessary to make it valid, legal and enforceable. If such modification is not possible, the relevant provision or part-provision shall be deemed deleted.  Any modification to or deletion of a provision or part-provision under this clause shall not affect the validity and enforceability of the rest of this agreement.

Shala etiquette

  • Please do not be late for class;
  • Please shower/bathe before coming to class and wear clean yoga clothes;
  • Please turn your phone off or engage its “Do not disturb” mode and ensure that no alarms are set;
  • Try and be respectful of other students and the space they are practising in;
  • Do not eat a meal for 2-4 hours before attending class;
  • Try not to drink for 30 minutes before or after class; and
  • It is nice to be sociable with fellow yogis but please be respectful of those practicing – keep chat quiet

Damian Cadman-Jones is authroised to teach Prana Vashya Yoga and trades as the Prana Vashya Yoga Studio (Leicester) 250 Queens Road Leicester LE2 3FU.

Urdva Prasaritha Eka Pada Uttasana

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Urdva Prasaritha Eka Pada Uttasana follows Padangusthasana or “head-to-big-toe-pose”; it is the third position in the Prana Vashya sun salutation.  Urdva Prasaritha Eka Pada Uttasana translates as “upward-split-one-leg-stretch-position”.

Starting, then, from the forward bend pose Padangusthasana, you should inhale and slowly lift the left leg parallel to the floor and in line with the hip, keeping your vision fixed on a single point on the floor throughout. Do NOT collapse the hip or else you will strain your knee.  Put another way: your raised leg and hip will tend to externally rotate slightly which causes the pelvis to come to the right and forces the hips out of alignment/ to collapse. This often happens when you try too hard. The idea of the posture is NOT to raise your leg as high as you possibly can; keep your leg raised in line with the hip and the knee straight (not bend the knee to gain extra height!)

Pay close attention to the standing leg, keeping your knees facing forward and not letting them turn out to either side. As your leg raises higher, your torso should act as a counterbalance and come towards the floor.

Benefits

Promotes better liver and kidney function

Works the ankles, knees, calf muscles, hamstrings and thighs

Contraindications

Avoid this asana if you have any issues with your lower back, ankle(s), or knee(s).

Damian is an authorised teacher of Prana Vashya Yoga.  To book a class with Damian you can contact him by:

Email: damiancadmanjones@gmail.com

Tel: 0777 900 1896

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/queensroadyoga/

Padangusthasana

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Padangusthasana or “head-to-big-toe-pose” is the second position in the Prana Vashya Sun Salutation (as pictured).  It follows urdhvasana whereby you inhale, look forward and bend back.

Standing, then, with your arms above your head extended towards the sky (having just completed the first posture of the Sun Salutation) and keeping your legs completely straight, exhale and bend forward from your hips, folding ribcage to thighs / forehead to shins.

Then grasp your big toes with the first two fingers and thumb to secure the position. Try to straighten your spine on every inhalation and try to hollow your belly and fold further forward on every exhalation.

If you cannot yet touch your toes with your fingers as you forward bend, then work up to this posture by trying to touch your toes; focusing on straightening your back with every inhalation.

If you have any lower back or neck injuries then avoid this posture. If you have been given a physiotherapy routine of exercises to perform to help you with your injuries, then always tell your yoga instructor and, if possible, show them your physiotherapy routine.  This way, your instructor will gain a clear idea about which muscle groups, etc need working on (and which ones are to be avoided).

Benefits

The primary benefits of padangusthasana are two-fold; it strengthens and stretches the hamstrings and dissolves body fat from the waistline.

Damian is an authorised teacher of Prana Vashya Yoga.  To book a class with Damian you can contact him by:

Email: damiancadmanjones@gmail.com

Tel: 0777 900 1896

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/queensroadyoga/

Urdhvasana

imageUrdhvasana means ‘position held by the upward parts of my body’.  It is the first position in the Prana Vasyha ‘sun salutation’ (or ‘surya namaskar’ in Sanskrit) which is a continuous flow of postures designed to warm up all the key muscle groups in the body.

How to get into the position

Ensuring your feet are together or waist with apart (if apart, then the heels and big toes should be in one line pointing straight forward), plant both feet firmly on the ground.  Your weight should be evenly distributed on both feet and hips.  As you inhale raise both of your arms together above your head to expand the chest and tilt your pelvis forward to curve the lower back, ensuring you keep your knees and arms straight.  As you lean back this way, keep looking forward.

If you have any neck or lower back issues then a good variation to Urdhvasana is to keep both your hands on your hips as you lean back.

It is very important to look forward when leaning back.  If you look back as you lean back, then you will collapse the neck so that the muscles stop working.  This causes the load / weight of the body to go into the available joint instead of working the relevant muscle (so you will end up straining your neck and lower back).  By looking forward when you bend back you work the anterior muscles of the torso and the linea alba, which is the proper intention of Urdhvasana;  the position held by the upward parts of my body.

Benefits

  • Strengthens the abdominal muscles, torso and shoulders
  • Can help with back ache
  • Helps with people who suffer from indigestion problems

Damian is an authorised teacher of Prana Vashya Yoga.  To book a class with Damian you can contact him by:

Email: damiancadmanjones@gmail.com

Tel: 0777 900 1896

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/queensroadyoga/