In Sanskrit the Heart Chakra is called Anahata. Roughly translated Anahata means "Un-stuck". This feeling of being "stuck" is such a perfect analogy for how we often feel through the winter months. This gentler version of the full pose is a wonderful way of opening the heart, enlivening Anahata and getting "unstuck". With a few gentle stretched before, you can practice this pose just about anywhere. To prepare your body, begin by opening the shoulders and wrists with gentle circles - moving with your breath. A few gentle cobras on the floor or at the wall with help to warm up your back and heart. If you have time, follow with 3-5 rounds of sun salutations.
Practicing this pose.
~ Stand in Tadasana (Mountain) keeping your legs and abdominal muscles engaged and your back in neutral position.
~ Press the palms of your hands into your lower back (fingers pointing up if you have the flexibility in your wrists).
~ Draw your elbows together and down towards the earth.
~With your hands supporting your lower back start to lift your heart keeping your chin tucked at first and lengthen your neck - imagine your neck starts at your mid back.
~Breathe into the backbend expanding across your ribcage.
~ When you have reached your full extension lift your gaze up.
~ Imagine the sun shining from your heart. Breathe
~ To come out of the pose, press your palms firmly into your back and keep your legs and abdominals strong.
~ Follow with more wrist circles and hugging one knee at a time up to your belly.
~ Breathe and feel youropen your heart to all the possibilities that life holds.
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