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Sunday, May 13, 2007

Pancha kosha 7 - Basics of Yoga Therapy


The most practical and useful, yet flexible and accommodating, program has been given by sage Patanjali. This program goes from gross to subtle and from outer to inner. Patanjali suggested some disciplines at the interactive and the individual levels called yama and niyama, so that the outer gross world does not affect our inner peace. According to one’s own tendencies and the environment one lives one can figure out what disciplines one has to incorporate into one’s lifestyle. Some of these things include: consciously being cheerful and not hurting others through words or even in thoughts.
Further, we need to perform physical exercises to maintain our physical being. When we are born, we are born with body parts which are designed to do a certain amount of activity in order to remain healthy. In that sense our body is not a mere physical structure but it is a part of the ‘mind – body – consciousness’ continuum. The exercise has to be done in such a way that we enjoy it and perform it smoothly. Exercises alone are not sufficient for efficient way of being. We also need to effectively and adequately relax We should do practices which will take us to a deeper level of relaxation than sleep, or any other unconscious methods of relaxation, can give us. This is where yoga plays a great role since yoga is the only known technique which can give us such deep relaxation which normally known sleep or external – agents – based – relaxation techiniques.
Some of the exercises recommended are:
1. Walking for 30 min – 1 hour, daily.
2. Walking up and down the staircase for at least twenty steps.
3. Sitting on the floor using our joints.
4. Hands stretch and hands in and out breathing exercises.
5. Some exercises for strengthening the back or spinal cord.
6. A set of three Suryanamaskaras or Sun salutations

All these things can be performed for half hour

The regiment of yoga positions such as asanas generally recommended is:
a. Standing poses such as ardha kati chakrasana, pada hastasana, ardha chakrasana, trikonasana and parivrutta trikonasana etc
b. Sitting poses such as paschimatanasana, ustrasana ardha matsendrasana, etc
c. Supine postures such as viparita karni, sarvangasana, halasana etc
d. Prone poses such as bhujangasana shalabhasana, dhanurasana.
e. All the asanas have to be followed at the end or when ever one feels necessary a long Shavasana, DRT or the corpse pose.

-to be continued...

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