Category Archives: Yoga Practices

Uttanpadasana – The Raised Leg Pose

Uttanpadasana or the Raised Leg Pose is beneficial for those suffering from lower back pain. In Sanskrit the meaning of Uttanpadasana is the raised leg pose. Uttanpadasana is an excellent exercise to strengthen the abdominal muscles and the lower back. It is relatively easy to practice.

Nabho Mudra – The Sky Gesture

Nabho Mudra or the sky mudra involves the tongue touching the upper palate and is similar to Kechari mudra. In Sanskrit, the word ‘nabha’ indicates sky and mudra means a gesture. Nabho mudra is mentioned in Gheranda Samhita and is practiced by meditators from various traditions.

Manduki Mudra – The Frog Gesture

Manduki Mudra or the frog gesture involves rotating the tongue inside the palate and drinking the nectar that is secreted from the top of the head. Manduki mudra is mentioned in the Gheranda Samhita.

Maha Bandha – The Great Lock

Maha Bandha or the Great Lock combines all the three main Bandhas or locks practised by yogis – Moola Bandha, Uddiyana Bandha and Jalandhara Bandha. Maha in Sanskrit means ‘great’ or ‘supreme’ and Bandha means a lock. Maha Bandha means the great lock and is mentioned in the yogic texts Hatha Yoga Pradeepika, Gheranda Samhita and the Siva Samhita. Maha Bandha is said to activate the prana shakti thereby aiding the awakening of Kundalini Shakti at the base of the spine.

Jalandhara Bandha – The Chin Lock

Jalandhara Bandha or the Chin Lock is one of the three main Bandhas or locks practised by yogis. Jalandhara Bandha is described in the yogic texts Hatha Yoga Pradeepika, Gheranda Samhita and the Siva Samhita. Jalandhara Bandha is said to activate the Vishuddhi Chakra.

Uddiyana Bandha – The Abdominal Lock

Uddiyana Bandha or the Abdominal Lock is one of the three main Bandhas or locks practised by yogis. Uddiyana Bandha is described in the yogic texts Hatha Yoga Pradeepika, Gheranda Samhita and the Siva Samhita. Uddiyana Bandha is said to activate the Manipuraka Chakra and channels the pranic energy upwards.

Mula Bandha – The Root Lock

Mula Bandha / Moola Bandha or the Root Lock is one of the three main Bandhas or yogic locks practiced by yogis. Mula in Sanskrit means ‘root’ or ‘base’ and Bandha means a lock.

Ashtanga Namaskara – Eight Limbed Salutation

Ashtanga Namaskara or the Eight-Limbed salutation is part of the Sun Salutation series of asanas. It appears as the 6th pose in the Sun Salutation or Surya Namaskara. In this pose, the body touches the ground in eight locations – the two feet (toes), the two knees, the two palms, the chest and the head. In Sanskrit, “ashta” means eight and “anga” means part. Hence the name Ashtanga Namaskara. This pose is also used by devotees for paying obeisance to deities in Indian temples.

Parvatasana – The Mountain Pose

Parvatasana or the Mountain pose is part of the Sun Salutation series of asanas. It appears as the 4th pose and the 9th pose in the Sun Salutation or Surya Namaskara. In Sanskrit “Parvata’ means mountain. The pose looks like a mountain from the sides and hence the name Parvatasana.

Ashwa Sanchalanasana – The Equestrian Pose

Ashwa Sanchalanasana or the Equestrian pose is part of the Sun Salutation series of asanas. It appears as the 4th pose and the 9th pose in the Sun Salutation or Surya Namaskara.