Basic Postures Tips for Yoga Beginner

Basic Sitting Postures with Benefits

JANU SIRSASANA: Correct foot placement
Sit up straight with legs evenly extended in front. Bend the right leg at the knee
and place the foot so that the heel is in the right groin and the front of the foot
touches the left thigh. Turn the foot so that the bottom of the foot is facing
upward and press the knee back to form an obtuse angle with the body. This
position will be difficult at first; don't force it. Put a folded blanket under the knee and also under the hips. Gradually the knee will move farther back. Just keep the
foot correctly positioned.

JANU SIRSASANA: Correct, perfect posture
Having positioned the foot and knee correctly, stretch the left leg out, keeping
the leg firmly on the mat. Settle the heel firmly and stretch the toes up. (The heel
should pull gently away from the ankle.) Now inhale and bend forward over the
straight leg, catching the foot with both hands if possible. Beginners should bend
only as far as they can without rounding the back. When this posture is done
correctly and completely, the body will roll forward over the extended leg,
absolutely flat from the tail bone to the head. Stay there breathing normally for
as long as you can. Inhale, release the handhold, come up smoothly, straighten
the bent leg and relax. Repeat on other side.

JANU SIRSASANA: Wrong posture
The heel is not positioned against its own thigh. The knee has not been pushed
back as far as possible to form an obtuse angle. The back is humped and curved
because the pelvis is jammed and unable to lift properly. Instead of a smooth,
complete stretching of the spine, the lumbar is over-stretched and the rest of the
spine constricted. The left leg is not flat on the floor.

TRIANG MUKHAIPADA PASCHIMOTTANASANA: Sitting, forward-bending pose over one leg
This posture generally follows the previous one. Sit with your legs stretched in
front. Bend the right leg so that the right foot is near the right hip. The toes
should point back. The right calf presses against the right thigh. The body will tilt
in this position so put a small folded towel under the left buttock to keep the hips
level and the forward stretch even and extended. Hold the left foot with both
hands, inhale and bend forward, keeping both knees together as you stretch
forward over the straight leg. Many students will find it difficult in this position to
even take hold of the foot of the outstretched leg. Do not despair. Just hold the
knee, shin or ankle, and sit, breathing deeply, in whichever position represents
your best extension. If the back is tight and the spine inflexible, this will take
time. Release the hold and straighten the bent leg. Repeat on the other side.


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