Marjaryasana - Bitilasana
Cat Pose to Cow Pose
Kelly Ann Charles
Come to hands and knees, table top position. Bring your shoulders over the wrists and hips over the knees. On an inhale, begin to arch the back, pointing the tailbone up towards the ceiling, looking up towards the ceiling. On an exhale, press into the palms and round the spine, tucking the tailbone under and bringing the chin in towards the chest. Continue to do 5 more rounds, using the breath as your guide.
Standard Moves presented by PUMA.
Half Moon Pose with Bind
Press fingertips and foot of standing leg firmly into the floor, simultaneously lifting opposite leg parallel to the floor, keeping hips stacked. Reach back to grab your foot, kicking your foot into your hand to create the backbend.
Come to sitting. If the knees do not easily come to the floor, sit on a block or rolled up blanket, so the hips are higher than the knees (as shown). Sit up tall, keeping a long spine, crown of the head reaching towards the ceiling, knees descending towards the floor. On an inhale, sweep the arms out to the side and overhead. On the exhale, lower arms down, resting the hands in prayer at the heart center.
Head to Knee Forward Bend
Come to sitting. Extend one leg straight out in front of the body. Bring sole of opposite foot against inner thigh of straight leg. Exhale as you extend forward from the groin, not the hips. Do not hunch the back, rather telescope the spine forward as you reach for the foot.
Come to flying position with your partner. The “flyer” backbends into “base’s” feet, then reaches for one foot with one hand in between the legs and the other hand around the other leg, pulls down on the foot to then bring opposite knee into chest, with a long extension of free leg.
Come to sitting. Hug right knee into chest, grab ankle and foot with both hands and place top of right foot on left thigh. You can stay here in half lotus or come into the full pose by also bringing top of left foot on right thigh. Sit up tall, close the eyes and breathe.
Press the top of the back foot into the floor, raising the knee, to help square the pelvis forward. Place fingertips by the hips and roll the shoulders back to open the chest. Hold for 3 steady breaths. To increase the stretch, walk the hands forward and come to lying on front leg.
Square the pelvis with the front of the mat. Press your thighs inward like you are squeezing a block between your thighs. As you exhale, release the chest towards the front thigh, lengthening the spine forward.
Head to Knee Forward Bend
Release one leg long in front and bend other leg in towards chest. Release knee out to the side, placing sole of foot against inner thigh of opposite leg. As you fold forward, imagine a flashlight is attached to the chest, shining on the toes as you come forward. This way you don’t round the back to come into the bend, you instead lengthen the spine to come forward.
Come to Warrior II. Place fingertips on floor to the outside foot of bent leg and kick up to balance, straightening leg. Press hand and standing leg firmly into the floor, simultaneously lifting opposite leg parallel to the floor.