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Purvottanasana – Upward Facing Plank Pose

(PUR-voh-tun-AHS-uh-nuh)

purvo = east
uttana = intense stretch
asana = pose

This is a pose of many names, but singularly it provides a strong and intense stretch that counteracts the effects of Chaturanga by opening the entire front side of the body. Drawing from the strength of the core, the support of the shoulders and the power of the leg muscles; Purvottanasana also helps us to challenge the self-imposed limitations we create to protect ourselves. By exposing our heart to the world and letting the light shine in, we become invigorated and energised to look beyond our fears and anxieties to seek and find new possibilities.

It is best to learn to come into Purvottanasana from Dandasana (Staff pose):

1. With your legs outstretched in front of you, place your hands about six inches behind your hips, with fingertips pointing toward the toes, and press your palms firmly into the ground.
2. Roll the thighs inward and switch on your core. On your next in breath, lift your pelvis as high as you can, keeping your chin tucked.
3. Think about lengthening your legs and encouraging your toes towards the floor.
4. Draw your shoulder blades down your back as you lift your chest.
5. If you it is within your practice and serves your body, release your head back toward the floor, being careful to not compress your neck.
6. Stay here for five breaths. Return to Dandasana to release the pose.

Feel the intensity as you release your chest to the sky and break away from the shadows that are fear and anxiety – to find light and energy in your heart to create new possibilities.

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