Intermediate Group Class: Working with the Elbows 2

paschimottanasana revolved
Staying with the ideas presented in Practice Lab 1/27/09, and Intermediate Group Class 1/30/09, we move here into some more advanced forward bends and twists.

The Sequence:


Supta Baddha Konasana (Reclined Bound Angle Pose)
• Lie back with the bolster across the back rather than along it.
• Support the head and arms as necessary.

Bharadwajasana 1 (Bharadwaja’s Pose 1)
• Turn head in both directions.

Setu Bandha (Bridge Pose)
• Block(s) under the pelvis, legs straight and feet at wall.
• Belt wrists.
• Move the elbow joints away from the head.
• Widen and open the space between the floating ribs and the elbow joints.

Uttanasana (Intense Stretch Pose) with the feet apart
• Set up with the palms flat on the floor on either side of the feet. If necessary, put the hands up on blocks.
• Roll weight into the inner hand and elongate the palms and fingers away from the wrists.
• Strengthen the inner shoulder blades and move them down the length of the body towards the tailbone.
• Turn the cracks of the elbows away from each other to widen the chest and to bring the elbows in closer to the body.
• Deepen the elbow cracks towards the tips as you both lengthen through the wrists, palms and fingers and through the inner shoulder blades.
• Widen across the floating ribs and divide the back body, drawing the upper back over the head like a hood as you go down from the floating ribs to the heels.

Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)
• Balance the elbows joints.
• Soften and widen across the floating ribs.
• Reach the elbow joints forward, away from the floating ribs.
• Lengthen the back body away from the floating ribs towards the heels.

Parshvottanasana (Intense Side Stretch Pose) with the arms forward
• With the right leg forward, expand the right floating ribs and move the right pelvic rim away from the head. Widen and wrap the left floating ribs around to help fill the right side.
• Reach the elbow joints forward, away from the floating ribs.
• Lengthen the back body away from the floating ribs towards the heels.

Prasarita Padottanasana 1 (Widespread Feet Pose 1)
• Roll weight into the inner hand and elongate the palms and fingers away from the wrists.
• Strengthen the inner shoulder blades and move them down the length of the body towards the tailbone.
• Turn the cracks of the elbows away from each other to widen the chest and to bring the elbows in closer to the body.
• Deepen the elbow cracks towards the tips as you both lengthen through the wrists, palms and fingers and through the inner shoulder blades.

Bharadwajasana 2 (Bharadwaja’s Pose 2)
• Widen the elbow joints away from each other and roll the elbow cracks away from the midline of the body.

Parshvottanasana (Intense Side Stretch Pose) with the hands behind the back in reverse prayer
• Balance out the lower back area as before.
• Resist the temptation to crank the upper arm bones around and to pull the elbows sharply back behind you.
• Instead, lengthen the fingers towards the head, the inner shoulder blades away from the head.
• Roll the cracks of the elbows away from the center chest to open the top of the chest and close the prayer position. Do this without pulling the elbows sharply back behind you (though they will move back a little bit.)
• Widen across the floating ribs and divide the back body, drawing the upper back over the head like a hood as you go down from the floating ribs to the heels.

Prasarita Padottanasana 2 (Widespread Feet pose 2)
• Lengthen the fingers towards the head, the inner shoulder blades away from the head.
• Roll the cracks of the elbows away from the center chest to open the top of the chest and close the prayer position. Do this without pulling the elbows sharply back behind you (though they will move back a little bit.)
• Widen across the floating ribs and divide the back body, drawing the upper back over the head like a hood as you go down from the floating ribs to the heels.

Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)

Salamba Shirshasana 1 (Head Stand 1)
• Do the pose twice, once with each crossing of the fingers. Stretch out in Adho Mukha Shvanasana in between for a few moments.
• Roll the inner hand and wrist into the head.
• Strengthen the inner shoulder blades, drawing them away from the head.
• Ground evenly through the elbow joints as you widen across the floating ribs and lengthen the back body towards the heels.
• Deepen the elbow cracks towards the tips as you lengthen through the forearms, wrists, palms and fingers.
• Deepen the elbow cracks towards the tips as you lift the inner shoulder blades off the head.

Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)

Salamba Sarvangasana1 (Shoulder Stand 1)
• Move the elbow joints away from the head and ground down through them as you widen and lift from the floating ribs.
• Deepen the elbow cracks towards the tips as you lengthen through the forearms, wrists, palms and fingers.
• Deepen the elbow cracks towards the tips as you lift the inner shoulder blades off the head.
• Roll the elbow cracks away from each other.

Halasana (Plough Pose)
• Keep the hands on the back
• Move the elbow joints away from the head and ground down through them as you widen and lift from the floating ribs.
• Deepen the elbow cracks towards the tips as you lengthen through the forearms, wrists, palms and fingers.
• Deepen the elbow cracks towards the tips as you lift the inner shoulder blades off the head.
• Roll the elbow cracks away from each other.

Janu Shirshasana (Head Stand)
• With the right leg forward, expand the right floating ribs and move the right pelvic rim away from the head. Widen and wrap the left floating ribs around to help fill the right side.
• Move the elbow joints away from each other, deepening the cracks toward the tips.
• Turn the elbow cracks down towards the floor, away from the midline of the chest.
• Widen evenly across the floating ribs and divide the back body, drawing the upper back over the head like a hood as you go down from the floating ribs to the heels.

Pashchimottanasana (Intense West Stretch Pose)
• Move the elbow joints away from each other, deepening the cracks toward the tips.
• Turn the elbow cracks down towards the floor, away from the midline of the chest.
• Widen evenly across the floating ribs and divide the back body, drawing the upper back over the head like a hood as you go down from the floating ribs to the heels.

Parivrtta Janu Shirshasana (Revolved Head of the Knee Pose) preparation
• Have the front leg bent with a bolster under the knee for support.
• Take a simple twist away from the front leg.
• With the right leg forward, expand the right floating ribs and move the right pelvic rim away from the head. Widen and wrap the right floating ribs around to deepen the twist.

Marichyasana 1 (Marichi’s Pose 1) twist only
• Instead of bending forward, bind the arms and twist away from the bent leg
• With the left leg bent, widen the left floating ribs and wrap the around, turning them down the inner thigh.
• Turn the left elbow crack down and the right elbow crack up to deepen the twist.

Parivrtta Janu Shirshasana (Revolved Head of the Knee Pose)
• With the left leg forward, expand the left floating ribs and wrap them around to deepen the twist.
• Move the elbow joints away from each other, deepening the cracks toward the tips.
• Turn the elbow cracks out, away from the midline of the chest.

Marichyasana 3 (Marichi’s Pose 3)
• Bind the pose, holding onto a belt if necessary.
• With the right leg bent, widen the left ribs and wrap them around into the twist.
• Turn the left elbow crack down and the right elbow crack away from the body to deepen the twist.

Parivrtta Pashchimottanasana (Revolved Intense West Stretch Pose) preparation
• Bend both legs and rest the knees on a bolster.
• Turn to the right by bringing the left elbow outside the right knee.
• Widen and turn from the left floating ribs.

Parivrtta Pashchimottanasana (Revolved Intense West Stretch Pose) preparation
• When twisting to the right, widen and turn from the left floating ribs.
• Move the elbow joints away from each other, deepening the cracks toward the tips.
• Turn the elbow cracks out, away from the midline of the chest to deepen the twist.

Shalabhasana (Locust Pose)
• Lie on the belly for a few moment to allow the back to settle.
• When doing the pose, stay low to the ground.

Setu Bandha (Bridge Pose)

Shavasana (Corpse Pose)


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