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Salabhasana- The Locust Pose

A long day of sitting in the office may invite stress and fatigue in your body. But, practice of this pose regularly can stretch out your body parts and feel you more calm and relaxed. An intermediate backbend pose which stretches your entire back, spine, chest and help you to feel rejuvenated and energized. In Sanskrit, ‘Salabha’ means ‘Locust’ and ‘Asana’ means ‘Pose’. This asana is pronounced as sha-la-BAHS-anna, Sanskrit- शलभासन. Salabhasana is also called as Grasshopper pose.

This pose resembles to a locust at rest and it takes lot of effort to get into this pose. This pose is regarded as one of the 12 basic asanas of Hatha Yoga sequence and a great foundation for deeper backbends like Bow pose and Wheel pose. Regular practice of this pose can build a better body posture.

Benefits

  • This pose helps to improve your body posture and increases flexibility.
  • Tones the abdominal organs and improves the process of digestion.
  • Strengthens shoulders, arms, legs, hips, thighs and calf muscles.
  • Helps to enhance the blood circulation throughout the body.
  • Provides strength to the entire back of the body.
  • Relieves stress, anxiety, and calms your mind.
  • Improves your body balance and increases the endurance capacity.
  • Regulates your metabolism and helps you to lose that extra weight.

Precautions & Contradictions

People who are having recent abdominal surgery should avoid this pose. Women should not practice this pose during pregnancy. Practitioners suffering from headaches, migraines, back or neck injuries should not practice this pose. Discuss with your doctor before practicing this yoga pose, if you have any recent or current medical concerns.

Procedure

  • Lie on your belly with your arms alongside your body.
  • Now, inhale and lift your legs and upper torso.
  • Ensure to keep your knees straight and lift your leg upwards.
  • Rest your arms alongside your body with palms facing down.
  • Your weight should rest on your pelvis, belly and lower ribs.
  • Hold this pose for few breaths. Exhale and bring your legs and head down to the floor.
  • Relax your body and repeat the same procedure for 2-3 times.

Variations

Beginners might find it difficult to lift their upper body during the initial practice. You can just lift your legs and use your hands for support. After you mastered the basic pose, increase the stretch by bending and lifting your knees as high as you comfortably can. Now, you can lift your upper body, the arms, the torso and the head. You can make your calf muscles perpendicular to the ground by increasing the stretch.

Tips

Ensure to keep your stomach empty before you practice this pose. Have your meals at least four to five hours before you practice this pose so that you can expand your body fully during the practice. Draw your pelvis down firmly into the mat while lifting your upper body. Engage the muscles of your abdomen to lengthen and lift your body during the posture. Remember never to force your body to achieve a deeper backbend. Yoga is all about the journey and you must enjoy it.

Conclusion

When you practice this pose, it teaches you about how to be calm and relax when you are going through tough times. Because, getting into this pose and staying there for few breaths is really tough and intense. This pose strengthens your back, abdomen and helps to be aware of your own body.

This pose has many benefits. So, don’t wait for the right moment, start your yoga practice today!

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