Thursday, June 09, 2011

Parivritti sarvangasana : twisted shoulderstand

I don't know the `proper' name for this asana, but have combined what it does -- twist at the waist, and the shoulderstand, and created it a reasonably appropriate name.

This is the first stage of a pose, where both legs are dropped to the side, either side, sharply to each side, so that u are actually hanging on from one of your wrists! The last time I attempted it, to dissatisfaction and imperfection, was at the ashram, under Janaki's guidance, as she led an evening class for the advanced yoga teachers' batch.  I kept trying it at the ashram, and felt maha pleased, till I took a photo of myself executing it and felt how far off the mark  I  was off!!:)

In this pose, the depth is reached by keeping on lowering your legs towards the floor. Plus sharpening the sideways twist. That calls for tremendous practice... And strength.

But it is an absolutely riveting pose, and needs a lot of strength from the shoulders, and mostly from the wrists.  I am starting to work on this, so hopefully both legs will obey. But even this one-legged position is quite extreme, and I love it where it is, incomplete et al:) The thing in yoga is the preparatory poses, their stages, are themselves complete poses for more advanced variations. So, they do give you high, and challenge u out of the comfort zone.
To prepare for this pose: You must be able to drop comfortably from the shoulderstand into the bridge. And walk in the plough, bridge chain sequence (mala). Main strength is from the wrist. But also, lightening up is important. That happens on its own, when the muscles power up, become strong. Mostly being light comes from strength, an interesting oxymoron that also defines pure yoga for me:) 

Happy sadhana! 

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