The asanas are various body postures that are performed in the practice of yoga, which vary according to body areas, energy centers and the strength of each person. The main functions of asanas are to provide the ability to master the mind through physical conditioning and proper breathing by developing stillness in thoughts, alignment of the body, health and well-being.
Natarajasana or dancer’s pose, also known as the Shiva pose, is one of the most popular balance asanas in history and even today because of its mystical symbolism. According to the Hindu legend, the God Shiva is the first of the gods to teach the millenary practice of yoga through dance since the movements incite to ecstasy and to experience the connection of the spirit with the universe.
Shiva Nataraja, meaning “Lord of Dance,” moves in perfect stability transcending time and space with subtle movements. Slow and harmonious in his majestic dance, he leans one of his legs on the ground while taking the complementary leg of his body and raised it high up balancing the vibrations of his soul and posing gracefully in the position of the dancer—or Natarajasana—contemplating the creation and destruction of the universe. In this way, he teaches to dance to his wife, Parvati, Spontaneously, one of the fish of the Ganges River observes them and following in the distance the instructions of God Shiva begin with his practice of movements. Shiva discovers the talent of this animal and transforms it into a man by calling him Matsyendra, the first disciple of the god Shiva, who over time becomes the pioneer of yoga.
Once you start to integrate the practice of yoga in a day to day, the mind and the body are adopting postures in a natural way according to their symbology, complexity and even the energetic scepter of each individual. Yoga is the continuity of synchronized movements with breathing providing well-being in body and mind.
Preparation for Dancing Shiva
Stand in comfortable clothing preferably yoga leggings or yoga pants. Start in mountain pose (Tadasana), focus your gaze at a fixed point, bend the right knee and bring the heel close to the gluteus, and hold the instep of the right foot with the right hand. While the left arm extends high, breathe slowly feeling the weight of the body on the base leg. Little by little with the help of controlled inhalation, gradually raise the leg without losing balance. Maintain the posture for 5 to 8 breaths. Perform the posture of the complementary side of the body.
Level 1: Maintain basic stance.
Level 2: Make a deep rotation of the shoulders to hold with both hands the heel of the foot that is on top.
- Promote concentration
- Toning thighs, gluteus and calves
- Stimulate the alignment of the posture
- Make your shoulders and arms more flexible.
- Keep the base leg extended
- Focus the gaze at a fixed point
- Synchronize breathing with movements.