Karuna Yoga Vidya Peetham Bangalore

1. Method of goraksasana practice

 Gorakshasana is an intermediate level yoga pose that requires flexibility, balance, and strength. Here are the steps to practice Gorakshasana:

  1. Begin in a comfortable seated position with the legs crossed and the spine upright.
  • Bend the right knee and bring the foot to the left hip crease.
  • Bend the left knee and place the foot on top of the right thigh, with the heel resting near the pubic bone.
  • Reach the right arm behind the back and hold onto the left foot.
  • Reach the left arm behind the back and hold onto the right foot.
  • If possible, interlace the fingers behind the back.
  • Press the feet and hands into each other to lift the chest and lengthen the spine.
  • Hold the pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute, breathing deeply.
  • Release the arms and legs and repeat on the other side.

Tips for practicing Gorakshasana:

  • If you are a beginner, start with easier hip-opening poses like Sukhasana (Easy Pose) or Padmasana (Lotus Pose) before attempting Gorakshasana.
  • If you have knee or hip injuries or limitations, avoid this pose or practice with caution.
  • Use props like blocks or blankets under the hips to make the pose more comfortable.
  • Focus on keeping the spine long and the chest lifted, rather than forcing the legs into position.
  • Breathe deeply and mindfully throughout the pose, using the breath to calm the mind and release tension in the body.

As with any yoga pose, it is important to listen to your body and practice with mindfulness and awareness. Don’t push yourself beyond your limits, and if you experience any pain or discomfort, come out of the pose immediately.

2.            How to teach goraksasana

Gorakshasana, also known as Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose, is an advanced seated yoga posture that requires a lot of flexibility and strength. Here are some general guidelines on how to teach Gorakshasana:

  1. Warm-up: Before attempting Gorakshasana, it is important to warm up the body with some simple stretches and warm-up poses. These can include any seated forward folds, gentle twists, and hip openers.
  • Seat position: Begin seated on a yoga mat with the legs extended straight out in front of you. Bend the left leg and bring the heel towards the right hip, then place the right foot on top of the left thigh.
  • Knee position: The right knee should be positioned on top of the left knee, and the right foot should be pointing straight up towards the ceiling.
  • Hand position: Place the left hand on top of the right foot, and the right hand behind the back, reaching towards the left hip.
  • Spine position: Lift the chest and draw the shoulder blades down the back, lengthening the spine. Maintain an upright posture and try to keep the head in line with the spine.
  • Breath: Breathe deeply and evenly, inhaling through the nose and exhaling through the mouth. Maintain the pose for a few breaths, then release and repeat on the opposite side.
  • Modifications: If you have difficulty sitting with the knee stacked on top of the other, you can use props like blocks or blankets to support the knees. You can also modify the hand position if reaching behind the back is too challenging.

When teaching Gorakshasana, it is important to emphasize proper alignment and encourage students to listen to their bodies. This is an advanced posture that should only be attempted when the body is properly warmed up and ready for the pose.

3.            Benefits of goraksasana

Goraksasana, also known as Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose or Eagle pose, has various benefits for the mind and body. Some of the benefits of Goraksasana are:

1. Strengthens and stretches the lower back, hips, thighs, ankles, and calves.

2. Stimulates the digestive system and improves digestion.

3. Improves balance and stability.

4. Increases focus and concentration.

5. Stretches the shoulders and opens the chest.

6. Helps to reduce stress and anxiety.

7. Increases blood circulation in the body.

8. Helps to improve respiratory function.

Overall, Goraksasana is a great pose to improve the overall health and wellbeing of the body and mind.

4.            Contraindications of goraksasana

Like any other yoga pose, Goraksasana also has certain contraindications that one should keep in mind before practicing. Some of the contraindications of Goraksasana are:

  1. Knee, hip or ankle injury: Those who have an injury in their knees, hips or ankles should avoid practicing Goraksasana as it involves putting pressure on these joints.
  • Spine injury: Individuals with spine injuries should avoid practicing this pose as it may aggravate their condition.
  • High or low blood pressure: People with high or low blood pressure should avoid practicing Goraksasana, as it involves holding the breath and can affect blood pressure levels.
  • Migraine: Individuals with a history of migraines should avoid practicing this pose as it can trigger a headache.
  • Vertigo: People who suffer from vertigo or dizziness should avoid practicing Goraksasana as it involves balancing on one foot and can cause dizziness.

It Is always recommended to consult a qualified yoga teacher or a healthcare professional before practicing any yoga pose, especially if you have any underlying medical conditions or injuries.

  • Counterpose for goraksasana

The counterpose for Goraksasana is usually a gentle forward bend or a hip-opening pose. Some of the recommended counterposes for Goraksasana are:

  1. Balasana (Child’s pose): This is a gentle forward bend that can help release any tension in the spine and the lower back.
  • Upavistha Konasana (Wide-legged forward bend): This pose helps to open up the hips and stretch the hamstrings.
  • Paschimottanasana (Seated forward bend): This pose helps to stretch the entire back of the body, including the hamstrings, spine, and shoulders.
  • Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward-facing dog pose): This pose helps to stretch the entire body, especially the hamstrings, calves, and spine.
  • Bhujangasana (Cobra pose): This pose helps to stretch and strengthen the spine, and can also help to open up the chest and shoulders.

It is important to listen to your body and choose a counterpose that feels comfortable for you.

  • Preparatory practice for goraksasana

 Before attempting Goraksasana, it is recommended to practice preparatory poses that can help you build the strength and flexibility required for this advanced posture. Here are a few preparatory practices that can be helpful:

  1. Sukhasana (Easy pose): This is a comfortable seated posture that can help to improve your posture and increase your flexibility in the hips and knees.
  • Gomukhasana (Cow Face pose): This pose helps to open up the hips and stretch the shoulders, which can be helpful in preparing for Goraksasana.
  • Marjaryasana and Bitilasana (Cat-Cow pose): This gentle spinal warm-up can help to increase mobility in the spine and improve posture.
  • Virasana (Hero pose): This pose helps to stretch the quadriceps and increase flexibility in the knees.
  • Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward-facing dog pose): This pose helps to stretch the entire body, including the hamstrings, calves, and spine, which can be helpful in preparing for Goraksasana.

It Is important to practice these preparatory poses regularly and to gradually increase your flexibility and strength over time. Remember to listen to your body and move slowly and mindfully into each pose.

  • Alignment cue for goraksasana

Goraksasana, also known as the Heron Pose, is an intermediate-level yoga posture that requires balance, flexibility, and strength. Here are some alignment cues to practice Goraksasana:

1. Begin in Dandasana (staff pose) with both legs extended in front of you.

2. Bend your right knee and bring the heel close to the right sitting bone.

3. Grab the right foot with both hands and pull it towards your torso.

4. Flex your left foot and press the left thigh firmly onto the ground.

5. Keep your spine erect and lengthened, and gaze forward.

6. Slowly straighten your right leg, keeping it in line with the torso.

7. Flex your right foot and engage the quadriceps to keep the leg active.

8. Keep your left leg grounded and pressing into the floor.

9. Maintain the position for a few deep breaths.

10. Release the leg and repeat on the other side.

Some additional alignment tips for Goraksasana are:

– Keep the torso and spine lengthened throughout the pose.

– Avoid rounding or collapsing the spine.

– Ensure that the extended leg remains in line with the torso.

– Flex both feet and engage the leg muscles to maintain balance and stability.

– Keep the shoulders relaxed and away from the ears.

– Gaze forward to maintain balance and stability.

Remember to listen to your body and avoid pushing beyond your limits, especially if you have any pre-existing injuries or conditions.

  • Kinesiology of goraksasana

Goraksasana, also known as Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose, is a challenging seated pose that requires considerable hip flexibility, strength, and balance. It involves a combination of hip abduction, external rotation, and extension, as well as spinal flexion.

During Goraksasana, the hip abductors, including the gluteus medius and minimus, are engaged to lift the legs off the ground and hold them up in the air. The external rotators, such as the piriformis and obturator muscles, are also activated to turn the thighs outward. In addition, the hip extensors, particularly the hamstrings and gluteus maximus, are stretched as the torso folds forward over the legs.

At the same time, the spinal erector muscles are engaged to maintain a straight back and prevent rounding of the spine. The core muscles, including the rectus abdominis, obliques, and transverse abdominis, are also activated to support the spine and maintain balance.

Overall, Goraksasana requires coordination and strength of the hip and core muscles, as well as flexibility of the hip and hamstring muscles.

  • Biomechanism of goraksasana

Goraksasana is a seated posture in which the legs are interlocked and the heels are pressed against the perineum, with the hands placed on the knees. This posture involves stretching and strengthening of the hips, legs, and spine, and has a number of biomechanical effects on the body.

In terms of joint mechanics, goraksasana involves flexion of the hips, knees, and ankles, as well as flexion and rotation of the spine. The posture also requires engagement of the muscles of the legs and core to maintain stability in the seated position.

Goraksasana also has an effect on the circulatory and respiratory systems. By pressing the heels into the perineum, this posture can help to improve blood flow to the lower extremities. Additionally, the upright spinal position allows for greater expansion of the lungs, promoting deeper breathing and increased oxygenation of the blood.

Overall, goraksasana is a posture that can have a positive impact on the musculoskeletal, circulatory, and respiratory systems of the body, and can help to promote overall physical and mental wellbeing.

  1. Anatomy of goraksasana

Goraksasana, also known as Yogi’s pose, is a seated posture in which the feet are placed on opposite thighs and the hands are placed on the knees or in a mudra. Here is an overview of the anatomy involved in this posture:

  1. Hips: Goraksasana requires a high degree of flexibility in the hips. The external rotators, including the piriformis, obturator internus, and gemellus muscles, are particularly engaged.
  • Knees: The knees are flexed, and the shins are tucked in close to the body. The quadriceps, hamstrings, and calf muscles are all involved in stabilizing the knee joint in this position.
  • Spine: The spine is elongated and straight, with the shoulders relaxed and the chest open. The erector spinae muscles along the back help maintain this posture.
  • Pelvis: The pelvis is in a neutral position, with the sitting bones evenly grounded on the floor or cushion. The gluteus maximus, medius, and minimus muscles help stabilize the pelvis.
  • Ankles and feet: The feet are in a dorsiflexed position, with the toes pointing towards the ceiling. The tibialis anterior muscle is activated to maintain this position.

Overall, Goraksasana requires a combination of flexibility, strength, and stability throughout the body to achieve and maintain the posture.

  1. Physiology of goraksasana

  Goraksasana is a yoga pose that involves stretching and strengthening the entire body. The practice of this asana stimulates the cardiovascular, respiratory, and nervous systems, and has several physiological benefits. Some of the benefits of goraksasana on the physiology of the body are:

  1. Improves digestion: Goraksasana puts pressure on the abdominal organs, which helps to improve digestion and regulate metabolism.
  • Strengthens the muscles: The pose strengthens the muscles of the legs, back, and arms, improving overall body strength.
  • Increases flexibility: Goraksasana helps to stretch the muscles of the back, legs, and shoulders, thereby increasing flexibility.
  • Stimulates the nervous system: The pose activates the nervous system, which can help to relieve stress and anxiety.
  • Increases blood flow: The practice of goraksasana can improve blood circulation to the organs and tissues of the body, which can help to reduce inflammation and support overall health.
  • Stimulates the respiratory system: The pose stimulates the lungs and chest, which can help to increase lung capacity and improve breathing.

7. Improves balance: The pose requires balance and stability, which can help to improve overall coordination and balance.

12.          Functional anatomy of goraksasana

Goraksasana is a pose that involves a combination of forward bending, spinal twisting, and hip opening. The primary muscles that are involved in this pose are:

  1. Hip flexors: The hip flexors, including the psoas major and iliacus, are stretched in Goraksasana due to the deep hip flexion required.
  • Hamstrings: The hamstrings are lengthened as the legs are straightened in the pose.
  • Gluteus maximus: The gluteus maximus is stretched as the legs are extended and the hips are flexed.
  • Spinal extensors: The muscles of the back, including the erector spinae, are lengthened as the spine is extended.
  • Abdominal muscles: The abdominal muscles are engaged to help maintain balance and stability in the pose.
  • Shoulder and chest muscles: The chest and shoulder muscles are stretched as the arms are lifted overhead.
  • Neck muscles: The neck muscles, including the sternocleidomastoid and trapezius, are engaged to support the weight of the head.

Overall, Goraksasana strengthens the core muscles, opens up the hips, stretches the hamstrings, and improves spinal mobility.

13.          Kinematics of goraksasana

Goraksasana, also known as Yogi’s Pose, involves a deep spinal twist and requires significant flexibility in the hips, spine, and shoulders. The pose involves a variety of kinematic movements, including:

  1. Rotation of the spine: The primary movement of goraksasana is rotation of the spine. The twist is initiated from the lower spine and moves upward, with the thoracic and cervical spine also rotating.
  • Flexion and extension of the spine: The spine also experiences flexion and extension during goraksasana, with the back bending slightly as the chest opens up and the shoulders move back.
  • External rotation of the hip: The leg that is crossed over the other leg in goraksasana is externally rotated, which requires flexibility in the hip joint.
  • Flexion of the knee: The leg that is crossed over the other leg is also flexed at the knee, which helps to deepen the twist and increase the stretch in the hips and spine.
  • Abduction of the shoulder: The arm that is raised in goraksasana is abducted, or lifted away from the side of the body, which helps to open up the chest and shoulder joint.
  • Internal rotation of the shoulder: The arm that is raised is also internally rotated, which helps to stretch the shoulder joint and increase flexibility in the upper back.

Overall, goraksasana involves a complex combination of kinematic movements that require significant flexibility and mobility in the spine, hips, and shoulders.

14.          Mechanism of goraksasana

Goraksasana, also known as Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose, involves a twisting motion of the spine and compression of the abdominal organs. This pose is believed to activate the manipura chakra or solar plexus, which is associated with the element of fire and governs digestion and metabolism in the body.

The twisting motion of the spine in Goraksasana stimulates the intervertebral discs, improves spinal mobility and helps in the prevention of spinal disorders. Additionally, the compression of the abdominal organs improves digestion, massages the internal organs, and stimulates the release of digestive enzymes and hormones.

Goraksasana also helps to strengthen the muscles of the back, abdomen, and hips. It stretches the hip flexors, hamstrings, and glutes, and strengthens the quadriceps, which can help to alleviate knee pain and discomfort.

The practice of Goraksasana is believed to activate the kundalini energy, which is said to lie dormant at the base of the spine. This energy is believed to rise up through the chakras, resulting in spiritual awakening and transformation.

15.          Anatomy and physiology of goraksasana

Goraksasana, also known as Yogi Gorakhnath’s Pose, is an advanced yoga posture that requires strength, flexibility, and balance. It involves a deep backbend, which can stimulate and stretch the muscles, organs, and nervous system.

The anatomy Involved in Goraksasana includes the following:

  1. Spine: Goraksasana involves a deep backbend, which requires a significant amount of spinal extension. The spinal erector muscles, such as the longissimus, spinalis, and iliocostalis muscles, play a crucial role in this posture.
  • Shoulders: In Goraksasana, the shoulders are drawn back and down, which requires activation of the shoulder blade muscles such as the trapezius, rhomboids, and serratus anterior.
  • Hips: Goraksasana requires deep hip flexion and opening, which involves the hip flexor muscles such as the iliopsoas, rectus femoris, and psoas major, as well as the gluteus maximus and medius.
  • Chest: In this posture, the chest is lifted, which involves the pectoralis major and minor muscles.

The physiology of Goraksasana includes:

  1. Respiratory system: The deep backbend in Goraksasana can expand the chest and lungs, increasing oxygen uptake and improving respiratory function.
  • Nervous system: Goraksasana can stimulate the nervous system, particularly the sympathetic nervous system, which can increase heart rate, blood pressure, and energy levels.
  • Digestive system: The deep stretch in the abdominal region in Goraksasana can stimulate digestion and alleviate constipation.

Overall, Goraksasana can provide various physical and mental benefits, such as increased flexibility, strength, balance, and mental focus, as well as improved respiratory and digestive function.

16.          How to refine goraksasana

Goraksasana, also known as Yogi Gorakhnath’s pose, is an advanced yoga pose that requires strength, balance, and flexibility. Here are some tips on refining the pose:

  1. Warm-up: Before practicing Goraksasana, make sure to warm up your body with some gentle stretches, Sun Salutations, and other preparatory poses.
  • Alignment: Proper alignment is essential in Goraksasana. Start by sitting on the floor with your legs straight in front of you, and then bend your left leg, bringing the heel towards your right hip. Cross your right leg over your left leg and place the right foot flat on the floor. Keep your spine straight and your shoulders relaxed.
  • Engage your core: Engage your core muscles by pulling your navel towards your spine. This will help to stabilize your lower back and prevent any strain or injury.
  • Focus on the breath: As you hold the pose, focus on your breath. Take slow, deep breaths, inhaling and exhaling through your nose.
  • Gradually deepen the pose: As you become more comfortable with the pose, you can gradually deepen it by bringing your left arm around your right knee and placing your right hand behind your back. Keep your gaze fixed on a point in front of you to help with balance.
  • Hold the pose for a few breaths: Stay in the pose for a few deep breaths, focusing on the stretch in your hips, spine, and shoulders. When you are ready to release, slowly unwind and repeat on the other side.

Remember to listen to your body and not force the pose. With regular practice and patience, you will gradually improve your flexibility and strength, making Goraksasana easier and more comfortable.

17.          How to correct and adjust goraksasana

Correcting and adjusting Goraksasana (Cowherd Pose) can be done in the following way:

  1. Alignment: Make sure the knees and feet are hip-width apart and the feet are pointing straight ahead. The arms should be straight with the fingers interlocked behind the back.
  • Hips: Gently press down on the hips to ensure that they are level and the pelvis is neutral.
  • Shoulders: Encourage the student to gently draw the shoulder blades together and down the back to open the chest.
  • Forward Fold: If the student is having difficulty folding forward, encourage them to bend their knees slightly or place a bolster or folded blanket under their forehead.
  • Modifications: If the student has tight shoulders or wrists, encourage them to use a strap or towel to interlock their fingers.
  • Breathing: Emphasize the importance of deep breathing in Goraksasana. Encourage the student to inhale deeply and exhale slowly as they hold the pose.
  • Props: You can use props such as blocks or blankets to help the student find the correct alignment and deepen the pose.

Always remember to adjust the student with care and respect, and ask for their feedback throughout the adjustment to ensure they are comfortable and safe.

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