Published on September 20th, 2013 | by Catherine Tingey0
SPHINX POSE (Salamba Bhujangasana)
SPHINX POSE is a deeper backbend variation of COBRA and hence best to do once the body is already warm.
Backbends and Arm Balances are the two categories of postures in which I see the most inner clenching.
We all do this and it’s helpful to remember the principal of ahimsa, one of the five yamas as designated by Patanjali in the Yoga Sutras.
Ahimsa is a principle of non-harm and non-injury. When we encounter difficult poses, especially ones in which we face FEAR, our natural reaction is to hold on tighter, clenching our muscles and minds.
But fear is there for a reason, often times telling us to back off and HONOR WHERE OUR BODIES ARE TODAY.
This is a lesson I have to continually remind myself of as I’ve had a lot of injuries, yoga and running-related, over the years. Reminding my students to extend more kindness and compassion to themselves, reaffirms this yogic principle for myself.
BENEFITS OF SPHINX POSE include:
- Strengthens the spine
- Opens the chest, lungs, shoulders, and abdomen
- Stimulates abdominal organs
- Firms the buttocks
Lay on your stomach and release the tops of the feet onto your mat.
Slightly rotate the inner thighs toward each other.
Place the forearms shoulder-width apart on the mat, fingers fanned. The elbows should be directly under the shoulders.
Press the ground away evenly through the forearms, and on an INHALE gently lift the heart and head away from the ground.
Relax the shoulders back and down away from the ears.
WORK IN THE POSE
Extend the tailbone down toward the heels to protect the lower back from overly arching.
Firm the legs but unclench the buttocks.
Reach the toes away from the head.