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Hatha Yoga Tip

Lie on your back, knees bent with feet on the mat. Separate the feet to hip-width apart. Place arms by the sides of the body, palms flat on the mat. Heels just close enough to the body so the finger tips can touch the heels. Inhale, push into the feet and lift the hips off the mat to a comfortable height. Hold each ankle with each hand. Breathe. Part two – Release hands and support the middle back with the palms of the hands, pointing the fingers towards the lower back and thumbs touching the sides of the ribcage. Breathe slowly and deeply for 30 seconds. To come out, release the hands back the mat, exhale and slowly lower the vertebrae of the back on to the mat. Counter posture – Knees to chest, then Savasana.

Helps improve flexibility and strength of the spine
Strengthens the wrists
Open the upper chest
Massages the shoulders, shoulder blades
Massages the spine
Stimulates the thyroid
An alternate posture to Sarvangasana during menses, high blood pressure

The physical body is made up of food … just like ice cream, pizza and tomatoes. What makes it shine is the pranic energy coming to the physical body through asana and pranayama. – Sw. Vishnudevananda

This yoga asana is an edited contribution for the Sivananda Gurugram partly sourced and edited from the Sivananda Publication: “Yoga: Your Home Practice Companion” – Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre – 2010.

Yoga asanas move your prana and remove your stress. Do them daily. – Sri Swami Sivananda

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Replace doubts with Satsanga, company of those with no doubts. – Sri Swami Sivananda


The Vedantic Kumbhaka in Pranayama

Being without any distraction and with a calm mind, one should practice Pranayama. Both expiration and inspiration should be stopped. The practitioner should depend solely on Brahman; that is the highest aim of life. The giving out of all external objects, is said to be Rechaka. The taking in of the spiritual knowledge of Sastras, is said to be Puraka, and the keeping to oneself of such knowledge is said to be Kumbhaka. He is an emancipated person who practises his Chitta thus. There is no doubt about it. Through Kumbhaka the mind should always be taken up and through Kumbhaka alone it should be filled up within. It is only through Kumbhaka that Kumbhaka should be firmly mastered. Within it, is ‘Parama Siva’. At first in his Brahmagranthi there is produced soon a hole or passage. Then having pierced Brahmagranthi, he pierces Vishnugranthi, then he pierces Rudragranthi, then the Yogin attains his liberation through the religious ceremonies, performed in various births, through the grace of Gurus and Devatas and through the practice of Yoga.

Sharpen the intellect. Thin out the ego. Purify the mind. – Sri Swami Sivananda