Learn Cat Pose

6 Dec

Catpose

Cat Pose is one of the most common Yoga Poses. Beginners who want to learn Yoga Poses can easily practice this Yoga Pose as it is one of the most easy to learn Yoga poses.

Intention:

There are some Yoga Poses which has common intentions. The warrior pose, triangle pose and cat pose are the Yoga Poses which have some common intentions including increase the circulation of blood.

    • To release tension in the spinal muscles and create a supple spine
    • To create internal tissue pumps to eliminate stale blood and lymph from the internal organs of the lower torso
    • To increase the circulation of blood and lymphatic fluids along the spine

Benefits:

There are some Yoga Poses which have some common benefits. Cat Pose, Forward Bending, Head to Toe are some Yoga Poses which have some common benefits.

    • Flexes the spine and relieves spinal muscle tension
    • Creates a supple, open, lengthened skeletal spine
    • Massages the abdominal organs and creates tissue pumps that eliminate stale blood and lymph from the organs
    • Synchronizes movement of the body with the appropriate breath to open and close the chest
    • Creates space, stretches the intercostal muscles and opens and flexes the ribcage
    • Brings awareness to the movement of the scapulas
    • Strengthens the arms and shoulders

Contraindications:

Most of the Yoga Poses have some contradictions. One needs to be careful about these contradictions while practicing Yoga Poses.

  • Avoid extreme lifting of the chin which crushes the posterior of the discs of the cervical spine
  • Avoid creating an extreme lordotic curve in the lower spine
  • If there are wrist problems create a fist and support the upper body weight on the knuckles
  • People with spinal injuries and back pain should avoid this asana if they react negatively to this flexion of the spine
  • Avoid this pose if you are pregnant.Teaching technique:

Teaching technique:

  1. Inhale as you come onto all fours into table position with hands directly underneath the shoulders and knees directly underneath the hips with the feet hip width apart.
  2. Exhale as you drop the sacrum towards the floor by tilting the pelvis creating a wave of energy that flows up along the back of the spine to the skull.
  3. Push your hands into the floor by extending the scapulas away from the spine and tuck the chin towards the chest to lengthen the cervical spine and open the back.
  4. Now at the completion of the exhalation the spine is arched upward open, straightened, lengthened stretching the posterior spinal muscles.
  5. Then inhale and lift the sacrum towards the ceiling by tilting the pelvis in the opposite direction, creating a wave of energy that flows up along the front of the spine in the opposite direction to the skull stretching and opening the front of the torso, ribcage, throat and spine.
  6. As the navel drops towards the floor draw the scapulas towards the spine to open the chest keeping the elbows locked and the arms straight.
  7. Now at the completion of the inhalation the spine is arched downward, straightened, lengthened stretching the anterior spinal muscles.
  8. This asana is then repeated in both directions using the appropriate breath, exhaling arching upward and exhaling arching downwards.

Modifications:

Most of the Yoga Poses have some modifications and one should know these modifications.

  • During advanced pregnancy because of the weight of the foetus suspended from the lumbar spine in this asana it is recommended that the hands be placed close to the knees to alleviate this problem.
  • People suffering from lower back pain or injury to the lumbar spine should also modify this asana by bringing the hands towards the knees so that the flex ion of the spine is limited.

Common misalignments:

  • The most common misalignment is the release of Mula Bandha which allows the pelvis to pivot too far during inhalation allowing the unsupported lumbar spine to over flex into an extreme lordotic curve crushing the vertebral disks.
  • Forgetting the placement of the scapulas during inhalation and exhalation and allowing them to find their own resting place.
  • Bending the elbows and allowing the arms to soften while focusing upon the spinal movement releases the limb bandhas of the arms and the connection with the scapulas.

Counter pose:

Some Yoga Poses have counter Yoga Poses. Balasana is the counter pose to release tension in the spine, to calm the body and relax the breath.

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