This asana is similar to a variation covered in your “RESTORATIVE YOGA FOR LIFE” textbook for Fish Pose with Blocks or Bolster. However, this asana allows the head to slightly fall back, opening the chest and back. Sometime referred to as Reclining Pose or Mountain Brook Pose, this is another asana that can be used to realign our backs after all the forward bending that we do all day. Because this asana counters our day to day movements, it is very refreshing and revitalizing as it opens your heart, throat, and belly, allowing energy to flow through your body – letting tension and stress melt away. This asana can be practiced either at the beginning of your sessions to ease students into the class and rejuvenate them or at the end to help release any lingering tension in the body and provide students with energy for after class.

For a full breakdown on how to practice this asana, refer to your textbook “RESTORATIVE YOGA FOR LIFE”. You can also refer to the videos below that demonstrate practicing this asana with different props.

Video 1: This video refers to this asana as Reclining Pose. It demonstrates how this asana is described in the textbook “RESTORATIVE YOGA FOR LIFE” with additional blankets under the arms.

 

Video 2: This video refers to this asana as Mountain Brook Pose. It demonstrates how this asana can be practiced with different props. The blanket is at the back and the bolster is under the knees.

For the benefits and contraindications for this asana, see below. Notice that they are similar to Cross Bolster Pose and Fish Pose.

Benefits
• Stretches and strengthens the chest, neck, shoulders, hips and psoas, which eases tension and stiffness in the neck and shoulders.
• Opens the chest, stimulating the respiratory system and increasing lung capacity. This is therapeutic for students with asthma.
• Stretches and strengthens the back and neck and increases flexibility in the upper back. This also helps with mild back aches and improves posture.
• Stimulates the cardiovascular system, increases blood supply to the cervical and thoracic region, assists the parathyroid, pituitary and pineal glands, as well as increases circulation in the throat. This stimulates the thyroid gland, helps soothe menstrual discomfort, and aids with digestion and constipation.
• Stimulates the nervous system, which reduces stress and anxiety, as well as relieves mild depression.
• Boosts energy, relieving chronic fatigue.

Contraindications
1. Students with frequent headaches or migraines should not practice without guidance. If they do practice this pose, it should be done very slowly.
2. Students with a severe neck injury, back injury, shoulder or arm injury, severe spondylitis, are pregnant, have heart complications, have insomnia, or have high/low blood pressure should avoid this pose without the use of modifications or props.
3. If a student feels tightness in the neck or back while in this pose, they should stop immediately and rest in Corpse Pose (Savasana).
4. Students with general heart ailments may have difficulty breathing in this pose.
5. Students with osteoporosis or osteitis should avoid this pose, as it can cause a compression fracture. If practiced, students should consult their doctor first and only practice if the neck is supported.

Lastly, see below for the break down on the affected chakra and how the doshic balance is affected. Notice how it differs from similar postures like Cross Bolster Pose and Fish Pose. This is because the slight changes in posture change the flow of energy in the body.

Chakra
Chakra Four:Heart, Love, or Anahata (Unstuck) Chakra. This is the love and equilibrium chakra. Its goals are balance, compassion, and acceptance. Its location is the heart.

Doshas
VataThis dosha is balanced in this asana.
PittaThis dosha is decreased in this asana.
KaphaThis dosha is decreased in this asana.

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