This is such a fun time of the year here in Thailand. With the approaching of Songkran I thought it would be appropriate that we focus on an asana that is inspired by water. What better asana than Matsyasana, also known as the fish pose.
It is the Thai New Year this month, which is traditionally celebrated with the use of water which symbolises the washing away of negative and old energy, in preparation for the new solar calender.
The Matsyasana is a depiction of Matsya, a divine being, found in Hindu mythology, that saved mankind from a universal flood. The open position of the head and neck in this pose is a great way of opening the communication channel and bring focus to the throat chakra.
So this month I suggest we celebrate the Thai New Year with a fun water cleansing ceremony in Matsyasana and begin the new solar year with renewed communication and open expression!
Let’s look at the benefits of the Fish pose:
- Stretches your hip flexors and intercostals (muscles between the ribs)
- Relieves tension in your neck, throat and shoulders
- Stretches and tones the front of your neck and your abdominals
- Stretches and stimulates the organs of your belly and throat
- Strengthens your upper back and the back of your neck
- Relieves stress and irritation
- Improves posture
- Therapeutic for rounded-shoulders, asthma, spasms in the bronchial tubes, and other respiratory issues
- Lie on your back, your legs are straight and firmly pressed together
- Place the palms and your bent elbows on the mat
- Inhale and lift and fill the chest with breath
- Exhale and roll your shoulder blades back and arch your back stretching your neck back and letting the crown of the head rest on the floor. (If you are new to this pose and find the head back position difficult, place a block or a folded blanket under your middle back, see Photo 1)
- If you are comfortable with the elbow position, rest your crown on the floor, tongue of the roof of your mouth and raise your palms above your head (Photo 3)
- Hold for 30 seconds – 1 minute
- Inhale to bring your chin to the chest and exhale to lower your self back down to rest on your back, breathe steady and repeat the asana again.
Enjoy songkran and happy stretching.
See you next month!
Metta, kim oxo