Kapha Yoga Poses

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Kapha Yoga Poses

Text of Kapha Yoga Poses

  • Kapha Yoga Poses: Breath of Joy

    Breath of Joy Breath of Joy is a rapid and warming breathing practice that coordinates the movement of the arms, legs and upper

    body with the breath. Stand with your feet a little wider than hip width. Toes are turned slightly in. Bend and

    straighten the knees as you inhale through the nose and simultaneously cross and swing your arms overhead. Bend

    and straighten the legs again as you exhale through the nose to swing your arms back down and then inhale to

    swing the arms (without crossing) back overhead, legs bending and straightening. Exhale to swing the arms down

    and slightly behind you as you release your upper body over the legs. Inhale to rise up and repeat the pattern.

  • Kapha Focus:

    Rapid movements and strong breath. Spread the muscles and skin of the chest.

    Benefits:

    Uplifting, energizing, and cleansing.

    Tapping The Thymus Standing with your feet hip width apart, use the finger tips to rapidly tap the center of your upper chest. Vigorously

    tap the area for one to three minutes.

  • Kapha Focus:

    Fully filling the lungs as you tap the chest.

    Benefits:

    Stimulates the thymus gland which builds immunity and massages the lungs, heart, bronchial tubes and throat

    through the vibration of the tapping.

    Angel Wings Standing with your feet hip distance apart, toes turned slightly in, bring the palms together and place the thumbs at

    your heart. On a deep inhalation bend the knees and then slowly straighten the legs as you press the palms away

    from you and overhead. Exhale to reach the arms out to the sides, fingers spread wide and then bend the knees as

    the palms join together and rest at your heart.

  • Kapha Focus:

    Gaze upward, open the arms wide, spread the chest and shine your heart out to the world.

    Benefits:

    Encourages the flow of prana (life-force), gently opens the chest and connects us to the breath and subtle energies.

    Mountain Pose / Tadasana Stand with your feet hip distance apart. Arms rest along side your body as you extend the fingers towards the floor.

    Drop the shoulders and lift the heart. Make sure that the floating ribs are not sticking out. Let the chin tilt slightly

    towards the chest to lengthen the neck. Reach the crown of the head up and ground down through the feet. Press

    through the big toe and outer legs. Internally rotate the femurs to give the sacrum space. Lengthen your tailbone.

    Kapha Focus:

  • Expand your chest, lift the heart and roll your shoulders back. Practice extended mountain pose by externally

    rotating the arms and reaching them overhead. Experiment with rotating the femurs internally and externally.

    Notice the different sensations in your body.

    Benefits:

    Increases focus, concentration and balance.

    Kapha Yoga Poses: Sun Salutation Begin standing with feet hip distance apart and the palms of the hands together at your heart. Inhale as you reach

    the arms straight out in front of the body and then over head. Open the front of the body by slightly arching the

    spine. Lift the chin and gaze upward. Bending at the hips, fold forward on the exhalation. Take a deep breath in as

    you slowly step your left foot back to come into a high runners lunge. Sweep the arms out to the sides and then

    overhead. Exhale to bring the hands to the floor and step your right foot back (downward facing dog). Feet are a

    little wider than hip width and your hips and tailbone are reaching up as you lengthen your spine. Secure your

    upper arms into the shoulder sockets. Inhale as you glide your hips forward bringing them parallel to the earth

    (plank pose). The entire body is engaged and the limbs extend out from your center.

    Slowly begin to lower the body as you exhale (four limb staff pose/chaturanga dandasana). Hug the elbows to the

    ribs and maintain evenness from the shoulders to the hips. Press through the top of your head and down through the

    heels of the feet. Inhale as you smoothly transition the chest through your arms into upward facing dog (urdhva

    mukha svanasana). In upward facing dog, the chest opens and lifts as the hands and tops of the feet support you.

    Exhale into downward facing dog. As you inhale, step your left foot forward into a high lunge. Sweep the arms out

    to the sides and overhead. Exhale to bring the hands down and step the right foot forward to meet the left. Slowly

    float the upper body up to standing. Arms reach overhead and then exhale to join the palms together and rest the

    thumbs at your heart.

    When doing multiple sun salutations, alternate the leading foot with each round (i.e. in the 2nd round, step the right

    foot back, then forward; lead with the left foot again on the 3rd round, and so on).

    * Note: As an alternate to the four limb staff pose, you may place your knees on the ground, feet off the ground

    and then hug the elbows into the ribs as you lower the upper body to the earth.

    Hands at Heart

  • Open Front of Body

    Arms Overhead

    Bend at Hips

    Forward Fold

  • High Runners Lunge

    Open Front of Body

    Arms Overhead

    Downward Facing Dog

  • Plank Pose

    Plank Variation

    Four Limb Staff

    Upward Facing Dog

  • Downward Facing Dog

    High Runners Lunge

    Open Front of Body

    Arms Overhead

  • Forward Fold

    Open Front of Body

    Arms Overhead

    Hands at Heart

    Kapha Focus:

    Gaze upward and spread the fingers each time you reach the arms overhead. Keep moving; do not pause for long

    between poses. Use a strong breath to guide you through the salutation.

  • Benefits:

    Stimulates circulation, stretches and strengthens the entire body and builds heat.

    Kapha Yoga Poses: Chair Pose

    Chair Pose / Utkatasana (with pelvic undulation) Begin in mountain pose with your feet hip distance apart, toes turned slightly in. Internally rotate your femurs and

    on an exhalation bend the knees and come to sit in an imaginary chair. On an inhalation, reach the arms out to the

    sides and overhead. Spread your fingers. Breathe fully and lengthen your exhalation. As you breathe in chair pose,

    use the inhalation to roll your pelvis under and exhale to roll the pelvis out increasing the arch of the lumbar spine.

  • Kapha Focus:

    Take deep breaths and feel the breath spread through the chest area.

    Benefits:

    Builds strength in the thighs and abdomen as well as builds lung capacity and stamina.

    Standing Extended Leg Pose (variation of Utthita hasta Padangusthasana) Begin in mountain pose. Find stability in your left leg as you bend the right knee to lift the foot from the earth. Flex

    the right foot and spread the toes. Keep the same alignment as in mountain pose and extend the arms with the

    palms facing up at 45 degrees from your hips. Take a few breaths to balance. Take a deep full breath as you

    connect to your power center, the area below the navel and above your pubic bone (hara), and on the exhalation

    extend the right leg reaching your right foot out in front of you. As you extend the right leg, the elbows come in to

  • the hips and the hands close into tight fists. Continue to balance and on the next inhalation, stretch the arms out,

    open the hands to spread the fingers and bend the right knee. Continue the movement and balance for several

    breaths. Repeat on the other side.

  • Kapha Focus:

    Keep the chest lifted and shoulders back. Feel a quality of buoyancy through the extended leg.

    Benefits:

    Increases heat and strength in the muscles, builds balance and stability, and tones the abdomen.

    Warrior I / Virabhadrasana I From mountain pose, step your left foot back. Turn the left foot out about 45 degrees. Keep the right toes pointed

    forward. Inhale to lengthen the sides of the body and exhale to bend the right leg. Make sure your right knee is

    directly on top of your right ankle. You may place the hands at the hips or on an inhalation extend the arms

    laterally and overhead. Palms face one another and the arms run along side the ears. Maintain fluidity by moving

    with the breath. Inhale to slightly straighten the right leg and exhale to bend the leg.

  • Kapha Focus:

    Lifting and opening the chest. Gaze upward and if it is comfortable for your neck, tilt the head slightly back to

    open the throat. When you are ready to release the pose, hold it for one more breath.

    Benefits:

    Builds strength and courage.

    Warrior II / Virabhadrasana II On an exhalation from warrior I open the upper body to the left and lengthen the arms from the shoulders out to the

    sides. Palms face down. Feel the line of energy running from the tips of the fingers on the left hand to the tips of

    the fingers on the right hand. Coordinate bending and straightening the right leg with the breath.

  • Kapha Focus:

    Lifting and opening the chest. Gaze upward. Hold the pose longer than you want to.

    Benefits:

    Builds strength and courage, and opens in the hips.

    Warrior II / Virabhadrasana II On an exhalation from warrior I open the upper body to the left and lengthen the arms from the shoulders out to the

    sides. Palms face down. Feel the line of energy running from the tips of the fingers on the left hand to the tips of

    the fingers on the right hand. Coordinate bending and straighte