Vinyasa Flow: Chaturanga Vinyasa
Chaturanga means “chamber” or “room”. A chaturanga is a special type of yoga where you do not just move from one pose to another but rather you go through a series of poses in sequence.
There are many different types of chaturangas. Some are very simple while others have several variations. You will find various styles like downward facing dog, side bends, headstands etc.
The term chaturanga refers to the practice of doing a series of poses in sequence. These poses may be done standing, sitting or lying down.
Chaturanga is usually practiced with a partner. Most commonly these partners are other practitioners who are experienced in the art of chaturanga.
There are two main types of chaturangas. One is called vinyasa which means “step” and the other is called pranayama which means “breath control”.
Vinyasa refers to moving from one position to another without changing your orientation. Pranayama means controlling the breath so that it flows smoothly throughout the body.
Chaturangas are a great way to learn yoga and stress management. Chaturangas are also used to improve breathing techniques.
As you become more skilled in chaturangas you will be able to calm yourself and focus your mind. This will lead to more confidence and less stress in your everyday life.
A chaturanga is started by standing with the feet together. The hands are palms together at heart center.
The word “om” is said while lowering the body down towards the floor. It is very important to not strain or hurry this movement. It should be smooth and elegant. The body aligns over the legs during this movement. The head, neck, and shoulders should be in one straight line over the hips. The hands are still at heart center at this point.
While in this position the next breath is drawn in and the mouth is opened just enough to whisper “mmm”. The “mmm” sound is very soft and subtle.
The sound should not be forced or strained in any way. The body should not move or jerk upwards during this part of the chaturanga.
The head, neck, and shoulders are the only parts of the body that move up when performing this next portion of the chaturanga. This should be a very slow and graceful movement.
No jerking, straining, or rushing should take place. When performed correctly the head, neck, and shoulders will move up while the chest and hips remain in place. The arms are kept at heart center during this movement.
The final portion of the chaturanga is to lower the arms from heart center down to the floor on each side of the body. The fingers point towards the legs and no splaying of the fingers should occur.
The forearms end up perpendicular to the floor when this portion is completed.
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