Popular Positions in Hatha Yoga

Hatha yoga derives it’s name from two words – ‘ha’ and ‘tha’, ‘ha’ meaning ‘sun’ and ‘tha’ meaning ‘moon’. Literally translated, it means a form of yoga that unites opposites. Hatha yoga focuses on the practice of postures or ‘asanas’ and the control on breathing, also known as pranayama.

‘Asanas’ of hatha yoga are done for the purpose of achieving a stable posture for meditation. Not only do they stretch your body, they also open up the energy channels and the psychic centers located within the body. Along with strengthening and purifying the body, these hatha yoga asanas control the mind and help it focus.

There are several kinds of asanas in hatha yoga, some of which are the seated asanas, standing asanas, supine asanas, and inverted asanas. Let’s explore some of these asanas in greater detail

Seated Hatha Yoga Asanas

The Seated asanas of hatha yoga include the butterfly posture, the cat-cow posture, the boat posture, and the lion pose

The butterfly pose improves flexibility in the hip and groin region. The cat-cow posture is excellent for your back and spine as it stretches this area completely. It regulates your thyroid gland and also aids digestion. The boat pose builds the core muscles of your body and helps in toning your ab muscles too. It also develops balance and focus in the whole body. There are several seated asanas that help to detox your body and purge it of all the pollutants that you may have accumulated.

Standing Hatha Yoga Asanas

The archer pose and the mountain yoga position are the two standing poses. The mountain pose is extremely beneficial for your entire nervous system. It gives strength to your arms and legs and makes your calves, shoulders, hamstrings and forearms more flexible. The archer yoga posture lends confidence to your body. With regular practice of this hatha yoga asana you’ll find an improvement in your ability to focus and concentrate. It acts as a great stress buster, and it’s great for your respiratory system.

Supine Hatha Yoga Asanas

The cobra pose is a supine asana that works on the overall health of the spine and the back. It builds strength in the upper body, especially the shoulders, chest and triceps. The plank asana is very good for making your triceps stronger and the development of core strength and abdominal muscles. The shavasana, or the corpse pose, allows the mind as well as the body to relax and it’s great for people who have trouble sleeping well.

The pawan sodhung kriya is yet another supine asana that detoxifies the liver and expels gas from your body. Regular practice of this asana increases the capacity of your lungs and it can also cure constipation and other problems related to the digestive system of the body.

Inverted Hatha Yoga Asanas

The two inverted asanas of hatha yoga are sarvang asana, or the shoulder stand, and the hal asana, or the plough pose. The shoulder stand pose boosts the immune system of the body and helps in massaging the parathyroid and thyroid glands. The stagnant blood that gets accumulated in the extremities of the body is also drained and removed. The plough posture develops the muscles of the abs and makes the spine, hamstrings and the back more flexible.


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