Monday, August 26, 2013

In Rhythms Monday Morning Yoga Pose: Dancer’s Pose or Natarajasana (Lord of the Dance)

What are you reaching for? What is your passion and what drives you to live a more meaningful daily existence? In dancer’s pose, access complete focus and determination, and bring awareness to your goals and aspirations.  How to come into dancer’s pose:

Come to standing on a firm foundation with big toes to touch or feet at hip-width distance apart. You can stand next to a wall for support or ask a friend to assist you. Ground through both feet and feel how the four corners of the feet help to balance.

Inhale and bring the arms over the head, in tadasana, mountain pose. Exhale, and drop the right hand, waist level, elbow and the waist, palm facing upward reaching to the right. Shift the weight to the left foot and grab for the inside, big toe side of the foot for external shoulder rotation.

Square off the shoulders, hips and knees. You can stay here and balance, this is dancer’s pose or move further and deeper into the posture.

Take your time moving into this posture. Inhale to prepare, and exhale begin reaching forward with the fingers and torso and simultaneously kicking into the right foot.  Find a place in line with your fingers to focus, a drishti point, or non-moving object. Notice the breath, and keep it flowing. Many times, when we forget to breathe, and hold the breath, we fall out of balancing postures.

Continue to kick more than you think you need to. If balanced, roll the right hip down in line with the left. Feel the arch in your spine, enjoy the stretch along frontline of the body. Feel the stretch starting at the belly, moving through the chest and shoulders and out through the fingertips. If you fall out laugh at yourself, and then come right back in.

Move into dancers on the opposite side.One day, you may be able to notice your foot raised above your head if you were standing in front of a mirror. Wherever you are in the posture, breath, stand proud, and if you fall out, notice your efforts, be grateful and patient and try again.

In dancer’s pose, we receive cardiovascular benefits, the heart may feel “racey”. Stand in stillness, and take a few rounds of breath, inhales and exhales, allowing the breath to come back to calm and effortlessness.

Check with your doctor before performing any form of exercise including yoga. Always honor your body. If a posture gives you pain, gently come out.

Benefits of the posture include, stretching the chest, shoulders, thighs, groin and abdomen. The legs and ankles become stronger as well as our focus, determination, and concentration.

Through regular yoga practice, we are able to release stress, anger and distractions that may “cloud” our judgment, negative thoughts, and dissolve ego. We can then better understand what the heart desires, surrender into stillness in order to listen, and live authentically.

Stopping in our busy day to properly breathe, focus on alignment in the posture, and being mindful and compassionate to ourselves, will help us to reap the benefits of yoga. We learn determined focus, clarity in the mind, and may better understand and follow our dreams and hearts desires.

Christi Iacono
In Rhythms Yoga- Contact for more info. Go to for class schedule and privates.

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