Sanskrit: अंजनेयासन; Anjaneya – Son Of Anjani, Asana – Pose; Pronounced As – An-jah-ney-ah-asa-nah
Anjaneya is another name for Hanuman, Ram’s aide in the Hindu mythology, Ramayana. Hanuman’s mother was named Anjani, and Anjaneya means son of Anjani. In English, this pose is called the Crescent Pose. It gets its name from the shape the body forms when in this asana. One would commonly see Lord Hanuman in this stance, and therefore, the crescent and Anjaneya are connected. This pose is also called the Half Moon Pose in Sivananda Yoga and its likes.
Everything You Need To Know About The Anjaneyasana
- What You Should Know Before You Do The Asana
- How To Do The Anjaneyasana
- Precautions And Contraindications
- Beginner’s Tip
- Advanced Pose Variation
- The Benefits Of The Crescent Pose
- The Science Behind The Anjaneyasana
- Preparatory Poses
- Follow-Up Poses
What You Should Know Before You Do The Asana
This asana must be performed on an empty stomach. You must have your meals at least four to six hours before you practice yoga. Also, make sure that your bowels are empty.
It is best to practice yoga early in the morning. But, in case you have other chores to run, you can do so in the evening as well. Just remember to leave a good gap between your meals and practice.
Style: Vinyasa Flow
Duration: 15 to 30 seconds on each foot
Repetition: Once on each foot
Stretches: Iliopsoas, Rectus femoris muscles, Sartorius muscles
Strengthens: Supporting muscles for the knees
How To Do The Anjaneyasana
- Begin the asana by coming into the Adho Mukha Svanasana. Once you are in the pose, exhale and place your right foot in front, just beside your right hand. Make sure your right knee and ankle are in one line.
- Gently lower the left knee, placing it on the floor, right behind your hips.
- Inhale, and lift your torso. Then, raise your arms above your head, such that your biceps are next to your ears, and your palms are facing each other.
- Exhale. Let your hips settle down and forward, such that you feel a good stretch in the frontal region of your leg and the hip flexors.
- Pull your tailbone towards the ground. Extend your lower back as you engage your spine. Stretch your arms further behind so that your heart is pushed up. Look behind as you move into the mild backbend.
- Hold the pose for a few seconds. You can also raise the knee of the back leg off the mat to come into a full crescent pose.
- To release the pose, place your hands back on the mat, and move into the Adho Mukha Svanasana.
Repeat the pose with your left leg forward.
Precautions And Contraindications
These are a few points of caution you must keep in mind before you do the Anjaneyasana.
- Avoid this asana if you have the following problems:
a. High blood pressure
b. Knee injuries
- If you have shoulder problems, avoid raising your arms above your head. You could place your hands on your thighs instead.
- If you have a problem in your neck, do not look behind. Instead, set your gaze forward.
As a beginner, you might find it hard to balance yourself while you are in the pose. To improve your balance, face the wall when you do this asana. Then, when you move your front foot forward, ensure your toes touch the wall.
Advanced Pose Alteration
To make this pose more challenging, try closing your eyes when you assume this pose, once you are confident in it. This will help you improve your balance.
The Benefits Of The Crescent Pose
These are some amazing benefits of Anjaneyasana:
- It makes the gluteus muscles and the quadriceps stronger.
- It gives the hips and hip flexors a good stretch.
- It opens up your shoulders, lungs, and chest.
- It helps you improve your balance.
- It increases your ability to concentrate and also builds core awareness.
- It stimulates the digestive and reproductive organs.
- If you practice this asana regularly, your body will be toned and energized.
The Science Behind The Anjaneyasana
To practice this asana, you need to have a good sense of balance, and your hips, groin, and legs must be flexible. This asana is again one of those deceptive looking ones that seem easy, but are actually quite challenging. This pose gives the hamstrings, groin, quadriceps, and hips a good stretch, and also allows a full range of motion in the lower body. This pose is perfect for cyclists and runners and highly benefits those who have desk jobs. It heals lower body soreness.
The Anjaneyasana opens up the chest, heart, and lungs. It also builds up the heat in the body and works amazingly well for those who find it hard to cope with cold weather. The opening up of the lungs throws out all the mucus, giving the lungs a good cleanse.
Now that you know how to do Anjaneyasana, what are you waiting for? This asana is a complete package – it tones the body and calms the mind. You are sure to feel energized and refreshed even after an intense low lunge workout.
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