Natarajasana – Dancer’s Pose – is a beautifully challenging yoga pose. It’s a complex pose with a lot of benefits:
- Opens the chest and front line of the body
- Works your balance (ankle and hip stability)
- Increases focus
The component parts (parts of the body that need to be warmed up or educated in order to do the pose) are as follows:
- Hip flexor opening: the front of the hip needs to be stretched and opened.
- Backbend: the backbend should initiate from the upper back (thoracic) and the lower back should be stabilized by the core, which leads us to ….
- Core stability: engaging the abdominals intelligently prevents over-compression in the lower back
- Hamstring opening: to hinge forward from the hip, the backs of the legs need to be open.
- Arm in extension: the arm that is holding your foot is moving backwards in space. This helps with chest opening.
- Balance: training the outer hips and ankles to support us in space.
Here’s a flow sequence that helps you warm up your body to make the most of the pose! Props you may want:
- Virasana – Hero’s Pose
- Cat Cow with leg and arm extended (Dancing Cat)
- Surya Namaskar A with low lunges
- Triangle trikonasana
- Twisted chair parivrttta utkatasana
- Eagle garudasana
- High lunge with arms clasped behind
- Wide legged forward fold prasarita padottansana c
- Sphinx and Locust salabhasana
- High lunge into twisted lunge parivrtta parsvakonasana
- Thigh stretch (add a quad stretch in low lunge, or do a pose like saddle)
- Locust and Bow dhanurasana
- Warrior 3 virabhadrasana
- Dancers holding foot with simple standing quad stretch natarajasana
- Dancers holding foot with arm in extension (behind), adding hinged forward backbend
- Dancers holding foot with both arms above head and elbows bent – use strap to hook foot
- Forward fold janu sirsasana or paschimottanasana
- Seated twist ardha matsyendrasana
- Thread the needle or seated outer hip stretch agnistambhasana
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