Women in Yoga in the West Yoga has now become a very popular activity in the west from last few decades. Very famous Hollywood artists confess their love and passion for this art. Basically, yoga came in contact with the west during the times of Plato and Aristotle who paid ample acknowledgments to Indian values in their arts. * These contacts were furthered by Alexander's arrival in India in the third century B.C. The formation of Asiatic Society quite later boosted up the concept of Indian mysticism in west which also included the wonders of yoga. The Yoga was formally introduced in the west through Sanskrit to English or Hindi to English translations of Indian epics. * Modern Yoga gained momentum in the west after late 1800's after the famous disciples of Swami Vivekananda and other great gurus traveled to west and came in contact of the people of west who also inclined towards this art. Germans were the first people to explore the beauty of the Sanskrit language and Vedic mystery. * Scholars like Max Mull immensely contributed in making Indian philosophy popular in west. With time several yoga masters went to west from India and brought popularity to this art in the west. Hatha Yoga then became the most popular form of Yoga in the west. * The Hatha Yoga has derived its meaning from 'Ha' of Sun and 'tha' of moon. It is popularly called forceful yoga because it seems to require all the physical exercises of yoga popularly known. It is said to be very balancing form of yoga aimed to balance to opposite forces in the body. * The entire art of Hatha yoga is based on basic features of yoga, breathing techniques, postures and energizing the subtle channels. It also aims to increase concentration and balance the energy level in the body.

Benefits Of Yoga For Pregnant Women Yoga is an ancient Indian form of exercise with an holistic approach, meaning it tackles a person's well being as a whole - mind and body - unlike other forms of exercise. Yoga can help women get through their pregnancy with minimal discomfort. It also helps the birth and post-delivery stages. * Yoga improves the blood circulation and minimizes the problems of water retention and edema. * Yoga reduces the anxiety and stress and induces a relaxing sleep. It helps women adapt to the new situations. * It successfully expels toxins from the body and improves digestion. * Yoga is a safe way for strengthening muscles and joints. * It regulates blood pressure and sugar levels in body and thus helps in preventing the risk of getting diabetes and high blood pressure during pregnancy. * Yoga stimulates the nerves and calms the body and mind. Breathing exercises regulate the hormones and emotions. * Yoga improves the posture and thus helps in easing back problems which are common in most of the pregnant women. * Regular practice of yoga stretches many ligaments throughout the pelvic, hip and leg areas, which eases labor pain. * Breathing exercises reduce mood swings, nausea and morning sickness. * Yoga strengthens the abdominal muscles which take part in pushing the baby through the birth canal.

Yoga Breathing or Pranayama The power of breathing practice to change your state of mind is extremely strong. A breathing practice can last anything from two minutes to half an hour or more. * Find a quiet place where you won't be distracted. If doing the exercises inside, make sure the window is open to allow plenty of fresh air into the room. * At first practise pranayama lying down and then gradually aim to sit upright with your spine straight. * Breathe evenly through the nose throughout the postures. * Never strain your breathing in pranayama. * Breathe deeply and slowly. * Progress slowly and carefully. * If you feel dizzy or light-headed, return to normal breathing. * Ask a friend to stay with you when trying out a new technique. * Do not rush things and practice all exercises as slowly as you can.

The Meaning Of Meditation Meaning Meditation, Definition Meditation, Yoga Meditation: Meaning of meditation. What does meditation mean? Information and translations of meditation in the telugu.

Yoga For Meditation Yoga precedes meditation. Any physical activity preceding meditation helps for thoughts to subside. Yoga is an excellent aid to get into meditation. * Padmasana (Lotus Pose) Padmasana is one of the most popular poses for meditation. This asans apart from being a meditative pose, removes stiffness from the knees, improves posture and calms the mind.   * Vajrasana (Thunderbolt pose) Vajrasana or the 'Thunderbolt pose' is also one of the poses for meditation. Vajrasana speeds up digestion, makes ankle joints flexible, improves the body posture, beneficial for the reproductive organs as well.   * Sukhasana (Easy pose) Sukhasana is the simple way of sitting with the legs crossed. This asana falls in the category of Yoga for meditation. This is one of the most simple asanas and the usual way of an Indian sitting on the floor. This asana is beneficial for the hips and the spine. It brings in an inner calm, banishing anxiety.   * Siddhasana is also a simple meditative pose. It purifies the 72,000 channels in the human body through which energy passes) It is beneficial for the knees and the ankles, lower spine, pubic region, abdominal organs etc. It renders calmness of the mind  

Yoga Back Bender Yoga back bender has two different curves on each side a steady arch at one end and a steep arch on the other end. The steep arch is meant for yoga practitioners who are more flexible. * It helps to open the front body, shoulders and chest. * It provides support for quieter restorative practice. * It helps in supporting back, which otherwise gets hurt. * Besides, it also enhances the final relaxation poses.   * Forward Bender Forward bender is helpful to perform difficult forward bends. It is a triangle shaped prop with several open slots along its curvature that looks like a curved ladder. It extends forward stretch into the calf muscles, so that the spine is fully expanded and straightened. Forward bender can be used for 1 and 2-legged forward bends. It effectively stretches hamstrings, calf muscles and achilles tendons.   * Whale Back Bender Whale back bender is a popular back bender among people. It's wide enough to support your entire back, while offering comfort to your spine as you perform a stretch. It looks like the regular back bender, but actually it is much broader than the regular ones. It helps in tractioning your spine without stressing other joints.   * Foldaway Back Bender As the name suggests, Foldaway Back Bender is a prop that can be folded, or can be separated to make two new props. It can be used to practice drop-backs and forward bends. It occupies less storage space, making itself the most versatile and innovative back bench.

Benefits of Rajyoga Raja Yoga, sometimes called the "Royal Yoga" is inclusive of all yogas, and its philosophy goes beyond the boundaries of the many styles of yoga today. Raja Yoga is also referred to as the Mental Yoga, or the Yoga of the Mind, because of its emphasis on awareness of one's state of mind. It is through this practice of concentration that one learns to calm the mind and bring it to one point of focus. It is at this point that we direct our attention inwardly, toward our true nature, which is Divine. You can achieve this by following the Eight-Fold Path of Raja Yoga, which includes observation of the following: * Yamas (Abstentions): Ahimsa (non-injury), Satya (truth), Asetya (non-stealing), Brahmacharya (chastity), Apragraha (non-greed) * Niyamas (Moral Observations): Susha (purity), Santosha (contentment), Tapas (austerity), Svadhaya (study of the scriptures), Ishvara Pranidhana (surrender to God) * Asana: Steady pose, posture or seat * Pranayama: control of vital energy through breathwork * Pratyahara: Withdrawal of the senses * Dharana: concentration of the mind * Dhyana: Meditation * Samadhi: Enlightenment, union with the Divine

Yoga For Great Hair Yoga for good hair growth there are many yoga asanas which are proved to be beneficial for hair growth. Did you know that Yoga is good for your hair? Yes from Yoga you can get lots of good benefits and have a great mind and body. You can start with some breathing exercises to keep your hair in perfect condition. Taking care of your hair is equally important as you do Yoga along with it. Some beauty regimen and good diet is important for you to have your hair in great shape. Digestive imbalance and hormonal misbalance can create problems in your body system as well as have affects on your mental health. Proper blood circulation is good for your scalp and keeps your hair good and luscious. Some asanas which keeps your blood circulation in head in proper condition are as follows: Sirsasana, Sarvanasana, and Ustrasana. But you should take expert advice to do these asanas properly.

Purna Yoga Benefits Purna Yoga Benefits, Purna Yoga Poses, Purna Yoga: Purna Yoga gives Yoga a positive and dynamic form. It suggests three levels of integration- the integration of the inner, the integration of the human psyche with its external environment and the integration of the psyche with its ultimate spiritual Ground. It not just brings optimism and positive energies to the body but also to the world at large. It is this united spirituality that proficiently combines self-transcendence with love, sympathy, and reverence for all living beings. It puts together the varied aspects of yoga, needed for transformation and healing. * Many of us have different activities that we practice in order to promote good health. To get stronger we may lift weights, for cardiovascular exercise we may do an aerobic activity, for balance and harmony we may use tai-chi, for flexibility we stretch out and meditation to find peace of mind and relax. • Does it all- It supports the mind, body, emotions and your Spirit • It creates both strength and flexibility • Promotes good cardiovascular health • Helps to create mental clarity and will relieve stress • Will create an emotional balance • Connects you awareness to your intuition and wisdom within • This style is safe for all ages and body types • Promotes healing from injuries • Promotes an overall sense of wellness.   * Purna Yoga Benefits Purna Yoga is the style of yoga which teaches alignment-based asana, healthy living and heart-centered meditation to help people achieve a wholeness, fulfillment and healing to life’s purpose. Purna yoga teacher training creates a way to have a life changing experience and through practice meeting the needs of today’s world.

Mantra Yoga Benefits Mantra Yoga Postures , MantraYoga Poses, Types of Mantra Yoga: Different people use different mantras for chanting. The mantras could be a particular sentence or a group of sentences related to a particular spiritual meaning. The most commonly used word for chanting is ‘Om’ which according to Sanskrit means spirit and according to hindu mythology it means emptiness. The combination of the two derives the purpose of the mantra yoga – A calm spirit detached from the anxieties and worries of a regular life. * Mantra yoga works a great deal on people suffering from anxiety, stress , nervousness, panic attacks and fear, * Regular chanting of the mantras creates a sense of tranquillity. * It also helps achieve inner peace * The advantage of mantra yoga, as it is believed, is that it turns an unhappy person into a happy and serene individual. * Since the most commonly chanted word is the word ‘Om’, the repetition of this word creates a physical vibration along with the mental one. This leads the practitioner to lead levels of sub and super consciousness. * Helps focus on your inner self. * It has positive effects on the nervous system. * This yoga relaxes the mind, body and the soul. * Mantra yoga when practiced to extreme levels, helps attain intense points of concentration that can cure any physical or mental disorders. * A person practicing mantra yoga benefits from regulated breath and clarity of mind. * The spiritual benefits of this yoga are psychic intervention, control of ones own mind and thoughts. * The relaxation of the mind enhances knowledge and the pressures of life are controlled by the thought control process. * The most important and ultimate benefit of mantra yoga is self realization and leads an individual on the road to enlightenment.

Karma Yoga Benefits Karma is a Sanskrit term meaning action or deed, either physical or mental. Thinking constitutes an act of mental Karma and all Karma is the sum total of an individual’s acts, in the present life and in past incarnations. Karma does not just refer to action; it also the result of our actions. There is a latent power in Karma or action. This is called 'Adrishta'. It is that which brings in fruits of karmas to an individual. * Through s service one mages to purify one’s heart. Egoism, hatred, jealousy, feelings of superiority and all the kindred negative traits will disappear. * The Karma Yogi develops feelings of humility, pure love, sympathy, tolerance and mercy. Above all that sense of separateness from the Almighty gets obliterated. Selfishness is removed. The practitioner develops a tolerant and broadminded outlook to life. * Karma takes the shape of Karma Yoga, when the practitioner acts as an instrument in the hands of the Almighty, as a participant in the cosmic activity of Nature and does the service without the expectation of fruits. The person then believes that he/she is only the instrument and that the Lord is working unselfishly, through him/her. * A person aspiring to follow the divine path of Karma Yoga doesn't have to possess materialistic wealth. All the person needs is a peaceful mind, body and a selfless attitude, to serve humanity. * The person following the path of Karma Yoga, known as Karma Yogi, should be free from lust, greed, egoism and anger. His/her heart should be filled with the thought of serving the poor and the helpless people, selflessly. * Even if the person has any traces of these 'doshas', he/she should try to eliminate them immediately. In addition, he/she should not desire for name, fame or money in return of the service. * he person, who expects respect and honor from others, cannot serve people selflessly. Moreover, a Karma Yogi should be fearless. He/she should be amiable and social. * He / she start to feel a Oneness and Unity with all of creation. Ultimately, the individual gains knowledge of the Self and comes to comprehend the concept of “One in all and All in one."

Jnana Yoga Benefits Jnana yoga is not a new fangled concept in the world of yoga. You can trace down the existence of this practice to the Vedic ages and the age of Bhagavad Gita. Hindu Lord Shri Krishna is believed to be the pioneering proponent of jnana yoga in the ancient age. However, the same practice has been modified and altered with the passing ages. Nevertheless, the flavor and the objective of this yoga have not faded over time and jnana yoga is still considered to be the path toward enlightenment. Practicing Jnana Yoga: * First and foremost read the Hindu ancient holy texts like the Vedas, Bhagavad Gita. * “I am” should be your mantra for chanting. * Focus on “I”. * Next form all sentences that come to your mind when you say I. * Now leave “I” behind and fight your ego to get hold of your focus away from I. * Meditate and breathe deep. * Discuss with your guru Benefits of Jnana Yoga Jnana yoga is awareness, not realization. Jnana Yoga is the understanding of the laws of existence and the awareness of a means to synchronize with them. In Jnana Yoga one ceases to be attached to forms of expression and becomes drawn to the essence, the process of insight.

Hatha Yoga Benefits Health Benefits Hatha Yoga, Hatha Yoga Health Benefits, Hatha Yoga: Many Eastern cultures believe that there is a strong connection between the body and the mind, and when these energies become imbalanced, it is thought that people can be left susceptible to illness, injury, and disease. Yoga strives to connect the two through physical positions (asanas) and breathing exercises. Some of the many hatha yoga benefits that are believed to come from this practice include: * Improved physical health * Stress relief * Improved balance * Increased strength * Poise * Detoxification * Flexibility While there are many hatha yoga benefits, it is still important to consult with your primary care provider before you begin any new alternative therapy, including this practice. Most people are able to enjoy these great benefits with no problem, but getting a second opinion from your doctor to ensure you avoid injury or complications is never a bad idea.

Bhakti Yoga Benefits Bhakti Yoga, Bhakti Yoga Stages, Bhakti Yoga Poses: Bhakti Yoga is just not a state of emotional being. It goes far beyond it. It’s a conditioning of the mind and true realization of the existence of God. There are various stages of Bhakti Yoga, which are very hard to attain, yet once achieved can be an out-of-the- world experience. * Sravana – This stage deals with hearing various stories and folklores of various Gods and their greatness. * Kirtana – This step deals with reciting various hymns and religious songs trying to please and praise the almighty. * Smarana - This part of Bhakti elaborates remembering God and making his presence felt all around you, so much so that you forget your own bodily presence. * Padasevana – At this phase, one has to service humanity to attain the true spirit of devotion to God. * Archana – This means worshipping the Lord through a picture or image, which can be both physical and mental but the focus has to be in pleasing the lord by immersing yourself in complete prayer and reverence. * Vandana - This is a phase of complete submission to God through deep and profound spirituality techniques. * Dasya – Becoming literally a servant of God, that is what Dasya stage is all about. You are no more yourself but a devoted servant to God chanting his glory, virtues, values and beliefs. * Sakhya – This stage elaborates on making God your friend with whom you can confess and confer your problems and troubles of life. * Atmanivedana – The last part of Bhakti Yoga deals with giving yourself to God, physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Nothing exists around you other than God.

Office Yoga Exercises Office Yoga, Office Yoga Exercises, Office Yoga Poses: Yoga is a healthy stress relieving process that you can perform at the office. Learn some tips for performing yoga at work from a certified yoga. Exercise 1 : Arm Stretch * During a coffee break, try arm stretch ! * What It Is: Special attention to arms by stretching them to increase flexibility. * How to Do: Be seated to your chair in a straight position, stretch hands in front and make fists. Push the hands forwards to stretch the forearm. * Time to Do: Hold for 30 seconds, relax and repeat 3-5 times. * Do It Right: Keep your head and neck balanced. * This Exercise Benefits : Relieve stress and keeps you energetic all the day . Exercise 2 : Shoulder Swing * Boss is going, try shoulder swing ! * What It Is: A great way to relax shoulders and ensure smooth blood circulation. * How to Do: Hold the left leg with right hand and place the left hand behind the back, as far as possible. Then swing shoulder from left to right. Return to starting position and repeat for the other side. * Time to Do: Hold for 20 seconds and relax. Repeat for 2-4 times. * Do It Right: Avoid if you have shoulder/neck injury. * This Exercise Benefits : This exercise helps to adjust the balance of shoulder and neck muscles. Exercise 3 : Waist Workout * Worried from Boss shouts, try waist workouts ! * What It Is: Makes your waist slim and trim. * How to Do: Sit straight with hands on the waist. Sink belly in, jutting out the shoulders. Hold, release the belly, jutting chest out. * Time to Do: Practice this for 1 minute, if you have time, for it to be effective. * Do It Right: Your dress should be comfortable enough and do not hamper your physical movements and blood flow. * This Exercise Benefits : Reduce belly fat and keep your waist in good shape. Exercise 4 : Ab Side Bend * Look as per the latest trend, try side bend ! * What It Is: Stretches the entire body from hips to fingertips. * How to Do: Hold a water bottle with both the hands and stretch it up over the head with arms straight. Gently bend towards the left as far as you can contracting the abs. * Time to Do: Hold for 30 seconds, come back to center and repeat to the right. Do it 5-8 times from each side. * Do It Right: Do not jerk the bottle and try to avoid any unnecessary motion during the movement. * This Exercise Benefits : Keeps hip’s stable and improve’s mobility. Exercise 5 : Chair Squat * Wana to look great, try chair squat ! * What It Is: One of the best lower body exercises you can do in an office. * How to Do: While sitting, lift up until your hips are just hovering over the chair, keep your arms out for balance. * Time to Do: Repeat for 4-5 times. * Do It Right: Always keep the knees in line with the toes. * This Exercise Benefits : Useful to get rid of knee problems and releases stress.  

Kundalini Yoga kundalini yoga, kundalini yoga in telugu, Kundalini Yoga Postures: Kundalini yoga is a physical, mental and spiritual discipline for developing strength, awareness, character, and consciousness. Preaching a message of drug free living and alternative ways of getting high, the teachings of kundalini yoga became a way for anyone to experience higher states of consciousness.  Kundalini Yoga is a physical and meditative discipline that combines postures (asanas), breath (pranayama), and the chanting of mantras. Kundalini refers to the energy that lays dormant at the base of the spine. Through the practice of yoga, this energy is raised and travels up the spine, through the chakras, creating an overall sense of well being and a heightened sense of awareness. The word Kundalini literally translates as a “coiled female serpent.” Traditionally the techniques of Kundalini were only communicated from Master to disciple and through a long initation process. In 1969 Yogi Bhajan began teaching kundalini yoga openly to the public. Yogi Bhajan defines yoga as such: “Yoga means a discipline of mind and body. There is nothing mysterious about it. Yoga does not explain the meaning of life... It’s aim is to develop a quality of mind which can perceive reality and acquire self knowledge.” There are no inverted postures in Bikram yoga, unless you are in a master class. Bikram felt that most beginners could not safely do inversions, and that other poses provided the same benefits as inversions.   Why Learn Kundalini Yoga? * Stress breaks down the systems of the body opening it to all other forms of disease and discomfort.  * The massive explosion in interest in yoga and mediation in the 21st century is testament to the fact that people are in need of relaxation, ways of finding inner calm, and physical well being. * The average person is subject to as much information in 1 week as our great great great grand parents were exposed to in their whole lives. Between, iphones, blackberry's, tv, internet, the radio, not to mention advertising, the human psyche is bombarded with information at a non stop rate. Without a buffer zone for the mind, this data acts as 24/7 bombardment of emotional manipulation caussing mental overload, or what we call stress. * This "buffer zone" of the mind can be developed through yoga and mediation. And with the advent of computers and the rise of the knowledge based economy, many of us are sedentary for hours at a time. * Yoga is the best form of exercise for maintaining health as it rebuilds the body through stretching and strengthening exercises. * Through the practice of Yoga and Meditation, even for a very short period of time, major improvements in physical health and mental clarity are possible. It is also a lot of fun.  

Mudras And Chakra Meditation Mudras Chakra Meditation, Chakra Meditation Mudras, Mudra Meditation: There are different ways by which you can carry out the technique of chakra meditation and one of these is by using different mudras and sounds for each. There are many benefits of the mudras. To the untrained meditation practitioner, mudras are often dismissed as inconsequential. In fact, the mudras have the power to harmonize all seven of our auric bodies—etheric (lower physical), emotional (lower emotional), mental (lower mental), astral, etheric (higher physical), celestial (emotional), and causal (mental). These auric bodies correspond with our chakras, from the base to the crown chakra. The following examples demonstrate how mudras stimulate our auric bodies, serving as a means to act as an interface to integrate our physical, mental and spiritual bodies.   * Bear Grip : With palms facing each other, and right palm facing the body, hook fingers together. Thumbs rest on outside of baby fingers. Concentration.   * Venus Lock : Palms facing up, cup hands together and interlock the fingers. Sexuality. Glandular balance.   * Prayer Mudra : Palms together in prayer position. Balancing energy.   * Buddha Mudra:  For men, rest right hand in left palm, and join the tips of the thumbs. For women, reverse hand position.   * Ethereal : Awakening of latent energy. Integrating the mind and body through the stimulation of brain cells and the energy centers of the chakras   * Physical Body : Helping to maintain presence in meditation by holding a physical posture.   * Guyan Mudra :With the palm facing the sky, touch the tip of the forefinger to the tip of the thumb. Receptivity.   * Active Guyan Mudra : Bend first joint of index finger under thumb. Knowledge.   * Shuni Mudra :Touch the tip of the middle finger to the tip of the thumb. Patience.   * Surya/Ravi Mudra : Touch the tip of the ring finger to the tip of the thumb. Energy. Intuition.   * Buddhi Mudra : Touch the tip of the little finger to the tip of the thumb. Communication. Intuition.   * Jupiter Mudra : Clasp hands together and extend and join the inside of the forefingers. Remaining fingers and thumbs are interlocked. Focus energy.

Benefit Of Yoga For Back Pain But if you have been suffering from back pain, you might reconsider. Pain relief is just one of the benefits of practicing yoga. You might also experience an improvement in your mental and emotional health that causes you to be relaxed and focused for the demands of your busy life.   * Fists Forward Bend Stand with feet hip-distance apart. Bend your knees and release your torso over your legs until your belly touches your thighs (or as close as you can get). Make two fists and place them in the opposite elbow creases. Relax your back, neck and head, and squeeze fists actively. Fists and bent elbows together are a central nervous system trigger that causes your back muscles to open. You’ll feel it after just a few breaths! Take 10-20 breaths here, releasing more tension from the back with every exhale.   * Wall Plank Stand in front of a wall at arm’s length. Reach forward from your shoulders and plant your palms on the wall, fingers wide, middle fingers pointing straight at the ceiling. Firm your fingers into the wall and draw your navel back as you lengthen the tailbone towards the floor. Lift your ribs from the pelvis. You want to work with a natural lower back curve but an active belly. Keep length in your spine as you begin to walk the legs back, folding at the waist, and walking your hands down the wall. Eventually you’ll come to an L-shape as seen here. If you can’t get there today without feeling pain or rounding in the lower back, bend your knees and maintain the proper spinal alignment. As you lift the navel and lower ribs into the body, reach long through the tailbone and legs into the floor while reaching the spine, arms and head towards the wall. Repeat for 10-20 breaths, then fold into Fists Forward Fold once again. Move to the next pose after a few breaths.   * Downward-Facing Dog If done properly, this tried-and true asana can be excellent for spinal traction and back health. Move into the pose with feet hip-distance apart [did you know that’s only two fists-width or so?] and hands shoulder-distance apart. It’s important not to let your back arch too much, which pressurizes the shoulder joints and over-contracts the back muscles. Instead, think of lifting the navel and front ribs, providing a buoyancy in the shoulders and back. Carve the tailbone towards the heels and press back through the inner and outer legs equally. This provides a root, a backward grounding from which you can pull and grow your spine and head forward towards the space between your hands. Even as you move the shoulders down the back and wrap your outer shoulder blades towards your armpits slightly, press long through the arms and fingers, providing a whole-body realignment and stretch. Take 5-10 breaths here, then proceed to the next pose.   * Pigeon We should call this pose “Angel of Mercy” for what it can do to rescue your poor aching back. It’s genius at opening the lower body muscles like hamstrings, hip rotators and the iliopsoas muscles, all which can contribute to back pain, without putting too much torque on the already tight back muscles. This releases them by springing open the muscles beneath. It’s a must-do in my yoga sequencing. From Downward-Facing Dog, bring your right knee behind the right wrist, foot either touching the left hip crease or slightly forward. Stretch the left leg out long behind you, knee and top of the foot facing the floor. Center your hips in space even if they don’t touch the floor. Press your palms into the floor or a yoga block, ground your legs into the mat, and allow your legs to stretch while you let your low back curve and lift up. Draw your navel and pelvic floor muscles in and send your heart to the sky. To deepen this pose, move your front knee wider and back and creep the back leg longer. Take 5-10 breaths here, then fold forward, forearms on a block or the floor for a full-body stretch to counterpose. Return to Downward-Facing Dog, then repeat on the other side.   * Back Traction Pose After your last Pigeon, swing your back leg around and come onto your back, knees bent, feet under knees as if to prepare for a Bridge Pose. Grab your yoga block or if you don’t have one, a firmly-rolled yoga mat will do. Lift your hips, and place the block in the center of your hips (not low back). The block should be the skinny way, in the same direction as your spine, not wide across the hips like your pants line. Place your hips on the block and gently walk your feet wide. Knock your knees in towards one another for one minute to stretch across the sacrum, and then walk feet and knees together. Lift your knees over your hips until you can relax them but still stay suspended in the air. This pose will release your iliopsoas muscles even as it detoxes you and provides traction for the low back spine. After about 30 seconds or so, scoot your head further from the shoulders and rest for another 30 seconds. Return to the first variation, feet wide on the floor, knees closer, for a few breaths. To release, walk the feet under the knees at hip distance. Engage your navel, lift your hips off the block and remove it to the side. Roll slowly down the spine inch by inch and enjoy your new spacious lower back curve and sacrum!   * Child’s Pose Roll over and take Child’s Pose for one minute or more. Try knees wide, big toes closer, but end with knees together for a neutral spinal stretch. If your head doesn’t touch the floor, place a yoga block or fists under your forehead so you can relax completely. Breathe slowly into your back body, expanding more nourishing energy and space on the inhale, and on the exhales, let ever more tension dissolve.