Preparing for Forward Extensions: Stability in Legs and Shoulders

This first session in the Short Course Essential Forward Extension, reinforces the stability of the legs and the shoulder blades.  The limbs, are both the beneficiaries of forward extensions, as well as active participants in the classical seated forward extensions.  In fact, the journey towards the final positions starts with preparation of the legs and […]

Forward Extensions: Preparing the Arms

The arms and legs are both the beneficiary of forward extension actions, and also essential participants in executing the forwards extensions. This session focusses on preparing the arms for forward extensions and progresses towards forward extensions through utkatasana and malasana. Level: Experienced Beginner, Intermediate, Gentle Duration: 70 min. Props needed: belt, chair, blankets. This recording […]

Forward Extensions: 
The Essential Intermediate Stages

Calling these ‘concave back’ positions an ‘intermediate’ of forward extensions is an inadequate description. These positions, with their characteristic, arched but fully extended back bodies, arms and legs, look quite different from the final positions of the forward extensions. They prepare us for the final forward extensions, and are beneficial in themselves, reinforcing the connection […]

Long Holds in Supported Positions

Holding an asana for a long period of time lets the effect of the asana ‘seep’ in.  Supported positions that make possible long holds are one of the boons of the methodology developed by shri BKS Iyengar. They calm the nervous system, and are conducive for a meditative and breath-centric practice. This sequences is also […]

Upper Back Health through Forward Extensions

Often forward bends are contra-indicated in cases of back injury.  The thoracic vertebrae of the upper back are the ones that are the stiffest for most people.  In fact, it is this stiffness in the upper back that contributes to imbalance and pain that manifests in the lower back. In this session we use intermediate […]

From Simpler Towards Deeper Forward Extensions

The category of forward extensions extends from gentle. restorative actions, to deep and intense asanas. This session comes after a couple of preparatory sessions, and explores deeper forward extensions, and arm balances. Those with back injuries/ weakness are advised to exercise caution in forward extensions. Level: Intermediate Duration: 75min Props: blocks and blankets are optional […]

Using a Yoga Strap to Prepare for Forward Bends

There are literally more than a hundred muscles on the side of the spine.  Gaining some awareness and control of these muscles goes a long way in ensuring overall health of the back, and also safety and comfort in more advanced asanas.    In this session we access those para-spinal muscles by initiating with the […]

Active Practice on a Hot Day

A hot day can make us feel lethargic and dull.  At the same time, physical activity can leave us feeling exhausted.  This session gives some ideas about how to do an energising practice on a hot day – employing some strategies like use of supports, selecting asanas that open the pelvic area, resting the head, […]

Twisting Actions Leading to Forward Extensions

Forward extending asanas are not just bending forward. Instead, it is more useful to think of them as ‘forward extensions’.  In this session we explore this extension action at the waist.

The Armpits: Waking up the Dark Corners in Backward Extensions

This session combines supported back arches, with supported forward extensions.  The back arches are used to explore one of the ‘dark zones’ in our body that usually escapes our attention – the armpit area. In this session we practice backbends with awareness to that back end of the armpits. We use the backbends to access […]