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Having a good sense of balance means more than being able to stand on one foot. While standing on one foot is impressive, true balance in yoga is physical, mental, and emotional stability. This series aims to achieve just that.

Balancing poses develop the functions of the cerebellum, the brain centre that controls how the body works in motion. As the cerebellum evolves, coordination increases and movement in the body becomes more efficient.

Additionally, this group of asanas stimulates our concentration, memory and circulation. They are helpful for relieving stress, lowering tension and reducing fatigue, and have a therapeutic effect upon the nervous system.

To practice balancing poses, full focus and one-pointedness is required. As soon as the mind drifts the balance waivers. When the mind is fixed, the body becomes steady and equilibrium prevails. This brings us into the present moment and connects body, mind and soul – the essence of yoga.
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Eagle pose

Garudasana

  • Stand with the feet together and the arms beside the body.
  • Find a point in front of the body to fix the gaze.
  • Bend both knees slightly and slowly transfer the weight onto the left leg.
  • Raise the right leg and twist it around the left.
  • Point the right toes toward the floor then hook the top of the foot behind the lower left calf.
  • Stretch the arms straight forward, parallel to the floor, and cross the right arm above the left.
  • Bend the elbows to raise the forearms vertical to the floor.
  • Join the palms of the hands together, lift the elbows up, and stretch the fingers toward the ceiling.
  • Hold the position for as long as comfortable.
  • To release, lower the hands then the foot and redistribute the weight evenly.
  • Repeat with the left leg, then practice up to 3 times on each side.

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Side plank

Santolanasana Variation - Side plank

Side plank - Satya Live Yoga

  • Assume the plank position.
  • Transfer the weight onto the right arm and right foot.
  • Roll on to the right, keep the body straight and the chest facing forward.
  • Have the outer side of the right foot firmly on the floor, the left foot rests on top of the right.
  • Position the left arm and hand along the trunk or raise it up in line with the shoulder.
  • Keep the side of the waist lifted and be careful not to sag in the hips.
  • Hold for as long as comfortable, then to release, roll back into the plank position and repeat to the other side.
  • To release, lower the knees to the floor and relax.
  • Practice up to 5 rounds.

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Plank

SantolanasanaPlank - Satya Live Yoga - Plank pose

  • Assume Table Position.
  • Tuck the toes under, so the heels are uppermost.
  • Straighten the legs and raise the knees from the floor.
  • Have the wrists directly under the shoulders and ensure the body is in one line from the top of the head to the heels.
  • Keep the hips even, contract the abdominal muscles toward the spine and lift the pelvic floor to make a plank with the body.
  • Gaze softly at a steady point in front of the body and hold for as long as comfortable.
  • To release, lower the knees to the floor and relax.
  • Practice up to 5 rounds.

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Spinal column pose

Merudandasana - Spinal column pose

  • Sit in the Seated Base Position (Prarambhik Sthiti).
  • Find a point in front of the body to fix the gaze.
  • Bend the knees and place the soles of the feet on the floor, slightly apart.
  • Take the arms inside the knees and grasp hold of the big toes.
  • Keep the spine straight and lean the body weight backwards slightly.
  • Raise the feet off the floor and balance on the buttocks.
  • Gradually straighten the legs and arms upwards.
  • Separate the legs out to the sides and gaze softly at the steady point.
  • Hold for as long as comfortable.
  • To release, bring the legs together at the centre, bend the knees and lower the feet to the floor.
  • Practice up to 5 rounds.

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Raised Hand To Big Toe Variation

Utthia Hasta Padngusthasana VariationRaised Hand To Big Toe Variation - Raised Hand To Big Toe Variation

  • Stand with the feet together and the arms beside the body.
  • Find a point in front of the body to fix the gaze.
  • Bend right knee towards the chest and take a hold of the right big toe with right hand.
  • Straighten the right leg in front of the body and once straight slowly pull it up closer to the torso.
  • Raise the left arm to the side for balance.
  • Place the left hand in jnana mudra, by curling the index finger to the base of the left thumb.
  • Once balanced take the outstretched leg to the side.
  • Hold the position for as long as comfortable then bend the knee, release the toe and lower the foot to the floor.
  • Relax the arms and then repeat to the other side.
  • Practice up to 3 rounds.

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Raised hand to big toe – Utthia Hasta Padngusthasana

Utthia Hasta PadngusthasanaUtthia Hasta Padngusthasana

  • Stand with the feet together and the arms beside the body.
  • Find a point in front of the body to fix the gaze.
  • Bend right knee towards the chest and take a hold of the right big toe with right hand.
  • Straighten the right leg in front of the body and once straight slowly pull it up closer to the torso.
  • Raise the left arm to the side for balance.
  • Place the left hand in jnana mudra, by curling the index finger to the base of the left thumb.
  • Hold the position for as long as comfortable then bend the knee, release the toe and lower the foot to the floor.
  • Relax the arms and then repeat to the other side.
  • Practice up to 3 rounds.

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Crane pose

BakasanaCrane pose - Satya Live Yoga - Crane pose

  • Stand with the feet together.
  • Interlock the fingers and raise the arms above the head.
  • Keeping both legs straight and strong, bend forward from the hips and place the hands on the toes of the left foot.
  • Transfer the weight onto the left leg, lift the right leg back and raise it as high as comfortable.
  • Draw the forehead toward the knee and hold for as long as comfortable.
  • Release the right leg to the floor and return to the upright position, keeping the arms straight as they are raised above the head.
  • Lower the arms relax and then repeat to the other side.
  • Practice up to 3 rounds.

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One foot pose – Eka padasana

Eka padasanaEka padasana

  • Stand with the feet together and the arms beside the body.
  • Interlock the fingers and raise the arms above the head.
  • Keeping the torso, head and arms in a straight line, bend forward from the hips and transfer the weight onto the left leg.
  • Simultaneously, lift the right leg straight and back, keeping it in line with the torso.
  • Continue to pivot from the hips until the right leg, torso, head and arms are in a straight line, horizontal to the floor.
  • Gaze softly at the hands.
  • Hold for as long as comfortable.
  • Return to the upright position, maintaining the alignment of the arms, back and leg.
  • Lower the arms, relax, then repeat to the other side.
  • Practice up to 3 rounds to each side.

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Lord Shiva’s pose – Natarajasana

NatarajasanaNatarajasana

  • Stand with the feet together and the arms beside the body.
  • Bend right knee and take a hold of the right big toe with right hand behind the body.
  • Raise the left arm up and forward, curl the index finger to the base of the left thumb to form jnana mudra.
  • Keeping the hips aligned, slowly raise and stretch the right leg up and back, simultaneously, swivel the right shoulder to point the elbow upwards.
  • Bring the right foot toward the back of the head and slightly lower the outstretched arm to counterbalance.
  • Gaze softly at the left hand.
  • Hold for as long as comfortable.
  • Release the posture by reversing the order of movements then repeat with left leg.
  • Practice up to 3 rounds to each side.

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Preparatory Lord Shiva’s pose – Saral Natarajasana

Saral NatarajasanaSaral Natarajasana - Satya Live Yoga

  • Stand with the feet together and the arms beside the body.
  • Bend right knee and take a hold of the right ankle with right hand behind the body.
  • Raise the left arm up and forward, curl the index finger to the base of the left thumb to form jnana mudra.
  • Keeping the hips aligned, slowly raise and stretch the right leg backward, as high as comfortable.
  • Gaze softly at the left hand.
  • Hold for as long as comfortable.
  • Release the posture by reversing the order of movements then repeat with left leg.
  • Practice up to 3 rounds to each side.

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Lord Shiva’s dance

TandavasanaLord Shiva’s dance - Lord Shiva’s dance

  • Stand with the feet together and the arms beside the body.
  • Find a point in front of the body to fix the gaze.
  • Bend the right leg and raise it until the right thigh is parallel to the floor.
  • Point the right foot a little to the left, so the heel is in front of the left knee.
  • Bend the right arm and place it across the body in line with the right thigh.
  • Allow the right hand to be limp with the fingers pointing down.
  • Bend the left elbow and position it above the right wrist with the forearm vertical.
  • Curl the index finger to the base of the left thumb and form jnana mudra with the left hand, position the palm forward.
  • Hold the position for as long as comfortable.
  • To release, lower the hands then the foot and redistribute the weight evenly.
  • Repeat with the left leg, then practice up to 3 times on each side.

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Lord Krishna’s pose

NatavarasanaLord Krishna’s pose - Satya Live Yoga - Lord Krishna’s pose

  • Stand with the feet together and the arms beside the body.
  • Slowly transfer the weight onto the left leg.
  • Raise the right foot from the floor and bend the knee slightly.
  • Place the outside of the ankle in front of the left shin, so that the sole of the right foot is almost vertical to the floor.
  • Raise both hands to the right and as if playing a flute, turn the right palm forward and the left palm backward.
  • Extend the index and little fingers of the hands, and wrap the thumbs around the curled middle and ring fingers.
  • Turn the head to the left and gaze softly at a fixed point to maintain steady balance.
  • Hold the position for as long as comfortable.
  • To release, lower the hands then the foot and redistribute the weight evenly.
  • Repeat with the left leg, then practice up to 3 times on each side.

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One-legged prayer pose – Eka pada pranamasana

Eka pada pranamasanaEka pada pranamasana

  • Stand with the feet together and the arms beside the body.
  • Find a point ahead to direct the gaze.
  • Slowly transfer the weight onto the left leg.
  • Bend the right knee, take a hold of the right ankle and place the sole of the foot against the inner left thigh.
  • Position the heel close to the perineum with the right knee pointing out to the side.
  • Join the palms together in front of the chest.
  • Gaze softly at the fixed point to maintain a steady balance.
  • Hold the position for as long as comfortable.
  • To release, lower the hands then the foot and redistribute the weight evenly.
  • Repeat with the left leg, then practice up to 3 times on each side.

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