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Yoga: Twist back into shape

PHUKET: Hello again and welcome. The last couple of months we have been practicing yoga asana that focus on lying, sitting and twisting.

By Kim White

Friday 20 June 2014, 03:13PM

We continue down the same path with this month’s Bharadvajasana – a great relief for the upper back and named after the legendary sage and vedic priest Bharadvaja, who is said to have written the poems on the Vedas and contributed to the writings of Ayurveda.

The beauty of this posture is in its simplicity. This twist is a great way for a beginner to stretch the torso in preparation for deeper asanas. There may be some long waiting periods again this month due to the weather.

These moments gifted by Mother Nature prove to be the perfect moments for a little bit of a stretch. Ongoing practise of Bharadvajasana’s twist will benefit you in the following ways:

•Massages the internal organs
•Stimulates and improves the digestive system
•Theraputic for carpel tunnel syndrome
•Strengthens the lower back
•Relieves lower back and neck pain
•Stretches the spine, shoulders and hips
•Stimulates blood flow through ankles
•Of huge benefit to arthritic spine sufferers.

To start enjoying the benefits of the spine reactivator, practise the steps below:

1. Start by sitting on the floor with your feet straight out in front of you and your back upright.
2. Rest on your right side, bend your knees and swing both legs to the left. Have the feet rest on the outside of the left hip, the left ankle resting in the right foot arch. If you find you are tilting right buttock, fold a towel and place it under the right buttock, this will help lower back compression (see photo one).
3. Inhale, and lift and elongate through the chest, then exhale and twist to the right. Keep the left buttock sinking to the floor. Place the back of the left hand against the outer right knee and the right hand on the floor beside your right buttock (see photo two).
4. Squeeze your shoulder blades together, keep the chest high and twist your shoulders deeper into the twist. Your head will look left, opposite to the shoulders twisting right.
5. To deepen the posture and increase lower back strength, take the right hand behind your back and hold onto the left elbow, while maintaining an upright torso (see photo three).
6. Breath deeply and steadily and you will deepen the twist in this asana. Hold for between 30seconds and a minute. Release from the posture as you exhale, and then repeat on the left side.

Enjoy the rain and the quiet opportunities it brings, happy stretching!
Metta, Kim oxo

About the columnist

Kim White is the owner of Sala Samadhi. She offers authentic Hatha Yoga instruction for private and group sessions. Contact: or 086 276 9174.

The opinions and advice contained in this column are those of the author only. The Phuket News is not responsible for the outcome or results of following any advice in any situation.



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