#WellnessWednesday - Yoga For Life: Week 169

Instructional picture: how to do the yoga pose ardha chandra

Ardha Chandra Chapasana - Sugar Cane Pose (Half Moon Bow Pose)

 

Ardha Chandra Chapasana is named for the Hindu goddess Lalita, who uses a bow made from sugar cane, and has a half moon in her hair. Lalita and her pose express an important dichotomy that all yogis must learn to embody: gentility and ferocity. Lalita fires arrows made of flowers from her bow, which never fails to slay its demon target. She represents all that is loving, sweet and gentle, until there are demons to be slayed. Then she is fierce and formidable in her fight for what is moral and good. Practicing Sugarcane Pose helps to grow those qualities within the practitioner as they strive to balance while surrendering into the expansion of the chest.                                                                                                                                                    

 

What To Do

  1. Warm up with sun salutations and traditional Half Moon Pose before attempting Sugar Cane pose.
  2. From a forward fold, place your left hand on the floor in front of your left foot.
  3. Inhale as you lift the right foot up behind you and extend the leg.
  4. Exhale; engage the whole core.
  5. Inhale; reach the right hand for the sky and try to stack the right hip on the left hip.
  6. Exhale; bend the right knee and catch the foot in your right hand.
  7. As you press the foot into the hand allow the chest to expand.
  8. Stay for three to six breaths.
  9. Then do the other side.

 

Modifications

  • Plant your grounded hand on a block or a chair to make this pose much more accessible. 
  • Practicing this pose facing a wall also helps with balance. 

 

Benefits

  • Builds stability in the body and mind.
  • Challenging balance practice.
  • Builds strength in the legs and feet.
  • Opens the hips, chest & shoulders.
  • Teaches balance between strength and softness.
  • Builds confidence.

 

 

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