Raised Arms Pose

Yoga Poses

Raised Arms Pose Hasta Uttanasana

Steps

Begin in Mountain poseBring the hands in front of the body and cross the wrists.  Inhale and raise arms over head.  Exhale and extend arms out to sides. To exit the pose, release the arms and return to mountain pose.   Repeat changing cross of arms.

Teacher Queues

Visualization Comments

This pose is sometimes called cleansing breath. Visualisations may include focus on expanding chest and lungs with air and then letting the air go as you would do with a balloon. Additional suggestive clues might include inhaling energy, exhaling tension. Inhale peace, exhale love, etc. Almost any affirmation works with this pose.

Technical Comments

Awareness is on the breath – the expansion of chest and lungs with the stretching upwards, followed by the deflation of chest and lungs with the lowering of the arms. To gain the maximum benefits from this dynamic pose, it is necessary to synch the breath and movement. Inhale as the arms are raised; exhale as the arms are lowered. When stretching up on the inhale, arch the back slightly, heart towards the sky.

Benefit Comments

  • Improves respiratory and lung function
  • Improves energy and well-being
  • Improves cardio-vascular systems
  • Brings mental calm and clarity

Watch Out For:

  • Reverse breathing (breathing in the opposite way described above)

Contraindications

  • Serious heart and lung disease

Modifications

  • Keep arms lowered and practice breathing (for high blood pressure and heart problems)

Variations

  • Combine with temple pose (place feet wide apart and bend knees. Inhale straighten legs, exhale bend knees to high squat
  • Combine with forward bend.  Inhale, stand tall and raise arms. Exhale fold forward (swan dive arms)

Yoga Counter Poses

  • Forward bend (Uttanasana)
  • Child pose (Balasana)
  • Downward facing dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)

Written By: Brenda Hamlet

Brenda Hamlet, is teacher and journalist in Oxford, England. More information about Brenda can be found at www.pret-a-yoga.com

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