Bound Angle Pose, or Baddha Konasana, is a seated asana which nurtures relaxation and serenity. It stretches the inner thighs, hips and legs. There is no twisting or turning, balancing or struggling in this pose, it is about quiet peace and contemplation. This pose is also known as Cobbler’s Pose as shoemakers in India would sit this way while working.
Intense Side Stretch Pose, or Parsvottanasana, is a beautiful balancing, stretching as well as strengthening pose. It demands awareness and synchronized breathing from the practitioner so it also serves as a wonderful calming practice. It is great whenever one needs a deep, whole body stretch with an emphasis put on the hamstrings and the core.
Cat Pose, or Marjaryasana, is one of the most commonly recognized yoga poses. The shape of the body resembles a stretching, arching cat. This pose is usually done as a partner to Cow Pose, as Cat Pose has the back high while Cow Pose has the back low.
Cow Pose, or Bitlasana, is a floor pose which is traditionally paired with Cat Pose. They are the mirrors of each other. Cow Pose shouldn’t be confused with Cow Face Pose. In Cow Face Pose, the legs and arms are all twisted together. In Cow Pose, you are simply on your hands and knees, your dangling abdomen representing the udder of a cow
As beautiful and delicate as it seems from afar, the Gate Pose, or Parighasana, makes the body look just as lean and sublime. Not being an advanced pose, it can offer its benefits even to beginner yoga practitioners: the pose gracefully stretches and lengthens the muscles of the legs, the spine and the shoulders. As much as it opens our chest and makes us reach up, it gives us intent, clarity of thought and self - belief.
Downward Facing Dog, or Adho Mukha Svanasana, is one of the most recognizable yoga positions out there. It’s featured on countless magazine covers and yoga posters. This triangular form represents so much of what yoga has to offer. It’s accessible to most people. It brings calm and stress relief. It strengthens muscles. It builds flexibility. The pose name comes from the stretch that just about every dog lover has seen a thousand times.
Warrior II, or Virabhadrasana II, is a natural continuation in the Warrior series, and can be used in a sequence as well as practised in isolation. It involves the majority of muscle groups and requires a lot of focus to get all the pose elements right.
Extended Triangle Pose, or Trikonasana, is a pose which both strengthens and stretches. At the same time, it encourages focus and body awareness since it is an excellent opener and stimulant of the Heart Chakra.
The Extended Side Angle Pose, or Utthita Parsvakonasana, is a position which does not only ground you and makes you more aware of your body, but it also strengthens it to its core. Being a strong activator of the Heart Chakra, the pose promotes free thinking, mindfulness and imagination. Naturally, it also gives a great stretch to the hamstrings, quadriceps, psoas as well as the upper body muscles.
Frog Pose, or Mandukasana, offers a deep stretch to the hips and groin region, opening up the front bodys and psoas. You can hold this pose for an extended period of time, however it requires focus and determination to allow the stretch to take full effect. Perfect for lengthening the back and generously opening the hips, Frog Pose can also help with knee pain and strength.
Knees to Chest Pose, or Apanasana, is a beginner pose which allows the practitioner to unwind and relax, especially after a long day when the legs feel painful and heavy. The pose, while taking the weight from the legs, focuses on the abdomen and the back, strengthening their muscles and other structures.
Bridge Pose, or Setu Bandha Sarvangasana, is a standard part of many yoga routines. It’s one of those poses which is strengthening but relaxing, invigorating but serene. Your body forms the bridge here, creating an arch. You can add different variations including one leg up and clasping your hands beneath your body to make this pose more challenging.
Corpse Pose, or Savasana, is one of the simplest poses in the entire yoga repertoire. You simply lie on your back. But within that is a wealth of power. Interestingly, while many yoga teachers love to use Western names for most poses as they are easier to remember, many also use the Sanskrit name Savasana for this particular pose because they find the name “Corpse Pose” to be off-putting for Western audiences. The pose’s alternate name, Mrtasana, means “Death Pose” which is not much better. So Savasana it is.