Anjaneyasana - Low lunge pose
Anjaneyasana, or Low lunge pose, is a basic lunge pose that helps you to open up the front of your body. To get an image of how the pose looks like, you can imagine yourself proposing to the universe, standing on one knee. When in Anjaneyasana your arms are extended reaching up towards the sky, and your palms are facing each other. You engage your core and lift your chest up with your heart open wide, as you gaze up and out into the universe. Anjaneyasana is said to have a calming effect on your mind at the same time as it helps you to build core awareness and work on your balance. Anjaneyasana is also said to have a soothing effect for those suffering from sciatica inconvenience. However, this is not a pose recommended for those suffering from a heart condition. Remember to focus on your breath during this exercise!
In Sanskrit: ananda = name of Lord Hanumān (believed to be an incarnation of Lord Shiva), a divine entity of spiritual significance, asana = pose
Benefits of Anjaneyasana
Anjaneyasana will help strengthen, stretch and relieve tension in your quadriceps, hip joints, glutes and core all at the same time. It is a powerful pose with a lot to benefit from. Anjaneyasana also allows you to improve your balance and increases core awareness. Two essential tools in your yoga practice. It is also said to have a positive effect on your knees as it strengthens the muscles surrounding the knee, providing it with support.
Anjaneyasana – step by step
- From Adho mukha svanasana: Downward-facing dog, stretch your right leg back and up.
- Breathe in and as you breathe out gently step your right foot in between your hands with your knee in an angel, placed in alignment with your ankle and heel. Ground your right foot into your mat.
- Lower your left knee down on to your mat.
- Point your left foot, so the top of the foot is resting on your mat. If you need to, move your foot a bit further back. This to create a nice stretch in your left thigh and hip joint.
- Breathe in, activate your core and lift up your torso. If you need to, you can place your hands on your right thigh and help push yourself in an upright position.
- Tuck your tailbone in and pull your pubic bone up. This will prevent you from arching your back too much. You want your back to be in a mild backbend, creating a nice light curve in your spine.
- Check your hips to see that they are parallel.
- Sweep your arms up until they are reaching straight up and keep your palms facing each other. Try to keep your arms shoulder-width apart or wider and pull your shoulder blades down a bit to keep your shoulders away from your ears.
- If you are able to, raise your gaze up towards your hands or the sealing. If this feels uncomfortable or too difficult, you can keep your eyes looking straight forward or down towards your mat.
Now repeat on the other side!
Are you ready to challenge yourself? When in Anjaneyasana, try closing your eyes.
- If you feel discomfort in your back or shoulders while keeping your hands and arms reaching up. You can choose to place them on top of your right thigh. This will also help if you experience difficulties in maintaining your balance when in the pose.
- If you find it difficult to put the top of your foot, on your back leg, down on the mat you can choose to flex your foot grounding your toes into your mat.
- If your knees are troubling you, try folding your mat or use a pillow or soft foam and placing it underneath your back knee for support.
- If your neck is giving you trouble, no not gaze up. Look straight forward or down towards your mat.