Practice Lab: Working with an Advanced Practice from "Light on Yoga", Part 3 [Light on Yoga]

[Part 1 of this series, in which we pick apart an advanced sequence from “Light on Yoga”, can be found here.]

There are several possible strategies we can use to break down and work with the sequence in a more manageable way. The first would be to come up with a series of simple practices that focus on an individual section, with a thorough, but realistic build-up to the main work of the sequence, followed by supportive restorative work. To recap, here are the main sections of the practice:
  • Vishamanyasa 1: Simple arm balances and preps for Urdhva Dhanurasana (Upward Bow Pose).
  • Vishamanyasa 2: Back-broadening and twisting arm balances and preps for Urdhva Dhanurasana (Upward Bow Pose).
  • Vishamanyasa 3: Groin-opening Poses, such as Bakasana (Crow Pose) and Eka Pada Koundinyasana 1 (Single Leg Koundinya’s Pose 1) with preps for Urdhva Dhanurasana (Upward Bow Pose).
  • Inverted Back Bends.
  • Mandalasana (Mandala Pose).
  • Advanced Baby Back Bends.
  • Groin/Hamstring/Hip Openers.
  • Twists and Deep Forward Bends
Having consolidated the poses we are familiar with and made some headway with the poses that are newer and more challenging for us, we can then start to practices edited versions of the sequence that feature adequate preparation and segments of the sequence that most relate to each other:
  • Arm balance vishamanyasa, groin/hamstring openers and deep forward bends.
  • Arm balance vishamanyasa, deep hip openers and twists.
  • Arm balance vishamanyasa and inverted back bends.
  • Arm balance vishamanyasa and advanced baby back bends.
  • Inverted back bends and advanced baby back bends.
Today let’s look at a sequence to work on the vishvamanyasa, including simple arm balances and preparations for Urdhva Dhanurasana (Upward Bow Pose).

The Sequence

Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)

Gomukhasana (Cow Face Pose)

Adho Mukha Shvanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose)

Bharadwajasana 2 (Bharadwaja’s Pose 2)

Shirshasana Cycle:
Salamba Shirshasana 1 (Head Stand 1)
• 5 minutes.
Eka Pada Shirshasana (Single Leg Head Stand)
Parshvaikapada Shirshasana (Single Leg to the Side Head Stand)
Baddha Konasana (Bound Angle Pose)
Upavishtha Konasana(Seated Angle Pose)
Parivrttaikapada Shirshasana (Revolved Single Leg Head Stand)

Sarvangasana Cycle:
Salamba Sarvangasana 1 (Shoulder Stand 1)
• 5 minutes.
Halasana (Plough Pose)
Karnapidasana (Pressure on the Ear Pose)
Supta Konasana (Reclined Angle Pose)
Eka Pada Sarvangasana (Single Leg Shoulder Stand)
Parshvaikapada Sarvangasana (Single Leg to the Side Shoulder Stand)
Eka Pada Setu Bandha Sarvangasana (Single Leg bridge Pose in Shoulder Stand)

Malasana (Garland Pose)
• Do the pose with the heels supported and a belt around the body and legs to support the thighs so that the inner thigh muscles can soften

Viparita Dandasana (Inverted Staff Pose) over a chair

Bhujapidasana (Pressure on the arms Pose)

Adho Mukha Vrkshasana (Hand Stand)

Urdhva Dhanurasana (Upward Bow Pose)
• Feet on blocks.
• Arms loosely belted to keep the arm and shoulder organized.

Dwi Hasta Bhujasana (Both Hands and Arms Pose)

Adho Mukha Vrkshasana (Hand Stand)

Urdhva Dhanurasana (Upward Bow Pose)
• Feet on the seat of a chair place against a wall, if possible. Failing that, feet once again on blocks.
• Arms loosely belted to keep the arm and shoulder organized.

Bakasana (Crow Pose)

Adho Mukha Vrkshasana (Hand Stand)

Urdhva Dhanurasana (Upward Bow Pose)
• The full pose from the floor if possible, but otherwise propped as needed.

Ardha Matsyendrasana 1 (Half Lord of the Fishes Pose 1)

Pashasana (Noose Pose)

Pashchimottanasana (Intense West Stretch Pose)

Shavasana (Corpse Pose)


Related Posts:

Practice Lab: Working with an Advanced Practice from "Light on Yoga,” Round-Up


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