Grounded on the earth, the wind-removing posture known as Apanasana/Pavanamuktasana uses the support of the ground to lengthen the spine. It also enables the energy of your hands and arms to massage internal organs. The posture releases the lower back, creates flexibility in the hips, tones abdominals, and improves digestion.
Variations of wind-removing posture can be found in many styles of yoga. In some practices such as Bikram, the posture is done with one leg and with both legs, drawing the knee(s) toward the chest.
Because the posture is safe for beginners, it can be used as a warm-up or finishing posture. Energetically, it is thought to stimulate the first
two chakras at the base of the torso, focusing on the exhale breath and the elimination of excess gas.
To practice this posture in a sequence start with the Tadasana, do a few standing postures such as Utkatasana (chair), Virabadrasana II (Warrior II) and Trikonasana (Triangle), Virbadrasana I (Warrior I) and Parsvottanasana (intense side stretch).
Then take the practice to the floor, doing Baddha Konasana (Butterfly), Bhujangasana (Cobra) and Pascimottasana (forward bend). After you complete 5-10 breaths in each posture, lie on your back and enjoy a long hold in wind removing.
Lie on your back like savasana, and use the foundation of the earth to support your entire body. Take a few body vinyasas, inhaling your arms
behind your head and then exhaling them back to the ground beside your hips, five to 10 times.
- Inhaling, reach your arms back behind you and then exhale, drawing the right knee just upside the rib cage toward the arm pit.
- Decide whether to hold the thigh or the shin and begin to connect to the foundation of the back body, including the shoulders, sacrum, and bottom leg.
- Avoid pulling too hard, but firmly connect with the dynamic energy of the arms and the passive release of the lower back, and the massage of the internal organs.
- As you use ujjayi breathing you will feel your own breath against your legs.
- Feel free to close the eyes and connect to the subtle body.
- To release the posture you might enjoy reconnecting with another round of body vinyasa and then enter the left side (3-7).
- Once you feel comfortable with the single leg version, try both legs.
- Inhaling, reach the arms back and then, exhaling, draw both legs toward your abdomen. If you can the flexibility in your body, try wrapping your hands around your thighs or both shins.
- Taking both legs, will increase the energy of the pose and with regular practice you will feel the subtle body and the physical benefits of this grounding posture.
Enjoy the week and Happy Holidays!
Yoga Happenings this Holiday Weekend:
The ALL LEVELS class is $20 in advance and $25 at the door.
Using a creative sequence of animals, Eric will use variations of familiar postures like rabbits, birds, dogs and tortoises and take the inspiration of the Kanda, an egg-shaped bundle that moves vital energy up Sushumna (energy channel), incorporating it in a mindful, sweaty and challenging flow. Jump into Spring.
*Please bring something from your home or garden that reminds you of spring and/or represents your spiritual path. We will be creating a community altar if you chose to present flowers, religious
symbols, incense, candles, oranges, etc. I will be assisting the class and giving adjustments.