Thursday, November 18, 2010

Bakasana Alyssa Chin 12:30 B

Alyssa Chin doing Bakasana.

Professional doing full posture of Bakasana.

English Name/Sanskrit name and translation

Bakasana's english name is: Crane Pose because Baka means Crane in Sanskrit. It is also known as Crow Pose. This pose has the name Bakasana because when in the full pose, it looks like a crane wading in a pond. This pose helps us to "fly" above limitations and take off for flight. (take risks) We start off as a scared little bird, but slowly start to evolve into this beautiful bird that "flies" with confidence and trust in themselves.

How do you do Bakasana?

1. First squat down from Tadasana, with your feet a few inches apart from each other. Separate your knees a little wider than your hips, and then lean your torso forward, so that it is right between your inner thighs. Stretch your arms so that it is about a foot in front of your feet. Bend your elbows, and then place your hands on the floor. Place the backs of the upper arms right up against your shins.
2. Place your inner thighs against the sides of your torso, and then wiggle your shins into your armpits. Slide your upper arms down as low as you can, onto the shins. Lift up onto the balls of your feet, and then lean forward even more so. Try to put the weight of your torso onto the backs of your upper arms. Make sure to keep your tailbone as close to your heels as possible, so that you can have a better chance of rounding your back completely and contracting your front torso.
3. With a big exhale, lean forward a bit more, so that you are on the backs of your upper arms. Lean forward as much as you can, so that you may come to the point where the balls of your feet have left the floor. If you did these steps, then you should end up with your torso and legs being balanced on the backs of your upper arms.
4. If you would like to push yourself a little more, squeeze your legs against the arms, and slowly press the inner hands firmly to the floor and straighten the elbows. Keeping your head in a neutral position with your eyes looking down toward the floor, your inner knees should be glued to the outer arms, high up close to the armpits. Try to stay in the pose for at least 20 seconds. If you want to do more, try doing it for a minute. To release, exhale and gradually return to a squat, by slowly bringing your feet to the floor.
A muscle that is key to doing this asana is the: Serratus Anterior, which is a scapular muscle that starts from the inside of the shoulder blade, and wraps around the rib cage to attach to the side and front ribs. It is the stable foundation that helps lift your back. Also it helps to remove the weight from your hands. It protects your wrists and strengthens your shoulders. Another muscle is the abdominal muscles. The abdominal muscles helps to carry the work, so that not so much weight is put on your wrists and hands.  

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Physical and Therapeutic Benefits

Some physical and therapeutic benefits of doing Bakasana are:

1. It strengthens the arms, wrists and abdominal muscles.
2. It stretches the upper back.
3. It tones the abdominal organs.
4. It opens the groins.
5. It helps us to trust ourselves.
6. With that trust, Bakasana helps us to take on new challenges in life.
7. It pushes all the doubt and hesitance out of our minds, so we only have positive thoughts.


In this asana I feel pretty relaxed. At first I felt pretty tensed and stressed out because I was afraid that I would just fall on my head or lean to one side and fall to the floor. I attempted the asana many times and could never quite get my feet off of the ground. I finally came to a point where I could get my feet off of the ground for a split second. Even though it was only for a split second, I suddenly felt relief and confident in myself. Before I was able to do that, I basically began doubting myself because I kept trying and trying, but I just couldn't get my feet off the ground. During that time where I was able to lift my feet for a split second, my mom was on the side cheering me on. She encouraged me that I would be able to do it and to try my best. She helped motivate me to have an attitude of "I can do this!" and "I will try my best no matter what." Doing this asana now, even if I'm only able to hold it for a split second, in that split second I feel relaxed because during the steps of getting into the asana, I am able to just breathe in and out. I'm able to just concentrate on what I'm doing instead of everything that's going around in my surroundings or in my life. This asana helps me to focus back into my inner self.