December 03, 2017

Asana (Yoga Pose): Benefits to your body, mind & soul

What is Asana?

Out of countless Asana or Postures that our body can take, few asanas have been identified as "Yoga Asanas" that aid the practitioner to achieve the goal of healthy mind, body and spirit. From simple poses to intricate ones, requiring concentration and adequate breathing, Yoga can gradually become a harmonious and beautiful experience of life.

Asanas are more than just physical exercises

Yoga Asanas are subtle processes to direct and activate your energy in a chosen way. The idea is to identify a posture in which you are absolutely comfortable so that you are able to get to the higher awareness state.

When you see someone in what it appears to be the best possible Asana, you don't have to aspire to be like them. Once you have learnt the basics, your body will find its own natural way to be at ease. You don't have to compare with anyone, just be yourself! 

If you identify the type of experience that comes with each Asana and start to know yourself, then your body will help you to realize the best-fit Asanas. You are not simply striking a pose, you are also learning about yourself and the things that surrounds you.

Hatha Yoga and Asana

Hatha Yoga is  the science of Asana. "Ha" means the Sun and "ta" means Moon. It represents a balance between masculine aspect of strength with the feminine aspect of  bringing the balance. There is a strong aspect of focus on breath on each of the Asanas in Hatha Yoga. This brings our attention inward, towards our own self.

The 84 Asanas 

There are 84 Yoga Asanas that exists to help us to reach to the higher awareness level. However, we don't have to master each of these asanas. If we are able to master any one, we can connect to our own self with the divinity. Asanas were named after beings that surround us, simply for easing the connection with nature and the powers that govern the universe. Some examples are:

  • Insect or the grasshopper pose (Salabhasana )
  • Water beings: the fish pose (Matsyasana), the frog pose (Bhekasna) or the crocodile pose(Nakrasana)
  • Four-legged animals: the horse pose(Vatayanasana), the lion pose(Simhasana), the downward facing dog pose (Svanasana);
  • Plants: the lotus pose (Padmasana), the tree pose(Vrksasana).
  • Birds: the peacock pose (Mayurasana).

Asanas - Benefits of Yoga Poses 

The beauty of Asanas is that they provide the opportunity and the means to train our minds and bodies to react to the stimuli of the world surrounding us, without judgement or attachment to the results. Allow Asanas to aid you to surpass your limits and fears, but remember to use your breath as a guide to understand if your body resonates with the pose. Have faith in yourself and grow!

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