sarvanga laghu vajrasana ( supported little thunderbolt pose )
This post is related to a series of post about asana variations.
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Some yogi’s claim that are as many asana’s as there are life-forms in this universe. Every being is a unique expression of the divine, an electron-magnetic signature. Others say that are 72.000 asana’s, some say 72 and others hold that if you master the 12 basic asana’s, you will receive all the benefits and attain yoga. The last see the majority of asana’s as variations on these 12. Yoga is honoring the diversity of nature, with that the expression of you body mind. Be your own teacher, and keep a beginners mind, when ever you practice yoga asana. Keep exploring, experimenting, that is how you will learn. Find calmness in a pose, that doesn’t say you have to be completely still or motionless. Keep the body mind active, let the body explore the pose. Exploring in ways of endurance, focus and relaxation. (sthira & sukha) Some days you want to take it even further, letting creativity into the asana and see where the asana will take you.
A supported variation of laghu vajrasana, little thunderbolt pose. And more or less an hybrid of usthrasana and the laghu vajrasana. A level deeper into the back bend, but not yet as deep as in laghu vajrasana. A good preperation for advancing into full laghu vajrasana and the supta vajrasana in the “nadi shodana” (2nd or intermediate series), ashtanga vinyasa series. Same actions apply as for ustrasana, but now taking the elbows into the inside arches of the feet.
- From vajrasana (or taking a vinyasa), diamond pose; inhaling deeply, coming on the knees with the thighs perpendicular to the floor. Exhale arching back taking the elbows at the inside of the heels, support on the arches of the feet, and pressing the palms into the buttocks. (Try to keep the lower legs in contact with the floor. If necessary, separate the knees, make sure that you are not over-straining the muscles and ligaments of the legs). Keep pressing the thighs and hips forward. The buttocks are taking support on the palms. Crown of the head on the floor, relax into the pose, breathe deeply and slowly in the final position. Getting out of the pose, reverse order, squeeze the shoulders more together to release the elbows from the ankles/arches and get back up on an inhalation.
sequencing; before the classical laghu vajrasana (A) for preparation, or using this pose as an alternative. It can be sequenced together with other back bends (after ustrasana, camel pose), or on its own and being preceded or followed with a forward bend and a twist.
- From; on both knees, knees hip width apart, inhaling lengthening the spine, exhaling arching back pushing the hips and thighs to the front. Inhaling back out of the pose, using elbows and abdomen for support.
- Alternatively from a supine position taking the arms under the spine, arching the back and come into the asana on an exhale. To release, reverse order .
- breath; exhaling into the pose, inhaling out of the pose. Deep calm breathing while in the pose.
- time; 5 to 9 deep and slow breaths.
- awareness; on the lower back, abdomen or breath.
- dhristi; in between the eyebrows,
- This asana massages the abdominal organs alleviating digestive ailments and constipation. (strengthens the abdomen)
- It tones the spinal nerves, makes the back flexible and realigns rounded shoulders. The nerves in the neck, the thyroid and parathyroid glands are particularly stimulated.
- The ribcage is stretched and expanded fully, which helps to fill the lungs to its maximum capacity and bringing more oxygen into the system.
- It enhances courage and confidence level in the personality.
- It is beneficial for those suffering from asthma, bronchitis and other lung ailments.
- It loosens up the legs and strengthens them in preparation for sitting in meditation asana’s. (opens the quadriceps)
- It enhances creativity and intelligence as it increases the circulation in the brain.
This asana should be avoided in case of groin, knee injury, back problems, high blood pressure or any cardiac problems, recent surgery and pregnancy. Be slow and careful while doing the asana as in almost all the yoga asanas. It is an intense backbend and should only be attempted by experienced yoga practitioners. Camel pose is a more moderate version of this position.