ZAMASANA FOR NOVEMBER
The sun is out and it's starting to feel nice and tropical this November, so we're celebrating by featuring Bird of Paradise for this month's Zamasana. Bird of Paradise pose, as demonstrated by Toowong's lovely Grace in front of some of the flora that shares its name, is also known by the Sanskrit name Svarga Dvijasana.
Our ABLOOM 21 Day Challenge starts on the 10th November (so make sure you sign up free now if you haven't already!), so we thought we'd kick off a challenge month with a bit of a challenging pose - and Bird of Paradise is a hip-opening, hamstring-stretching balance that will no doubt require all your concentration!
Just like the flower that shares its name, as this pose blossoms it opens with grace (like Grace!) and strength. There are several poses that prepare the body for Bird of Paradise, including Tree pose, Bound Triangle pose, Extended Hand-to-Big-Toe pose, and bound Extended Side Angle pose.
- Begin in Warrior II pose, with left foot forward and left knee bent. On the exhale, draw your left arm under the inside of your left thigh and bring your right arm up and then behind your back. Draw hands together until they clasp and twist your upper body to the sky as you settle into Bound Extended Side Angle pose.
- Turn both feet to the front of the mat and start to creep them towards each other until they are hip distance apart and your torso is flattened to your thighs. Maintain the bind.
- Shift all your weight into your right leg and begin to carefully lift your torso, raising your bent left leg with it. Raise up until you are standing tall, crown of head to sky. You may like to stay with this variation, Bird of Paradise with a bent leg. Otherwise, continue:
- Expand the chest and draw the lifted left leg to the side as you slowly extend it, finding your balance in the pose. Revert to a bent leg to find steadiness. Hold your gaze steady and deepen your breath.
- Come out of the pose the way you came into it, in reverse.
- Repeat on the other side!
Enjoy your moment in Paradise!