Half-Moon/Ardha Chandrasana

Half-Moon/Ardha Chandrasana

Half-Moon/Ardha Chandrasana

An advance standing balance pose that stretches the body in several directions at once – through the crown of the head and arms to improve balance and coordination. Ideal for those feeling the stresses and stains after a difficult day and releasing of feeling of anxiety. A natural progression from Triangle Pose.

Description:
Begin in Mountain Pose/Warrior I or Warrior II.
Exhale as you pivot forward and place your weight on your stepped forward bent leg, also pivoting up onto the back toes. Place the right hand on the floor 10-12 inches diagonal to the outside of the foot, left hand is on left hip. Inhale as you shift your weight onto your supporting right leg pressing it into the floor,  engaging the muscles above your right knee and drawing them from the knee up into your pelvis fully stretching and straightening the right leg until the body is strong. Keeping your leg muscles engaged.

Lifting and extending the left leg strong and straight, turning the body to the left and stacking the hips, foot flexed.

Finding your balance, stacking the shoulders checking that the right hand is directly under your right shoulder.  Then extend the left arm up reaching for the ceiling and eventually the head is dividing the arms looking either neutral or up depending upon your neck.

Expand and lengthen the body with each breath, visualizing the chest expanding as your arms stretch outward and your body lengthens from the crown of your head through to your raise foot.
Enjoy for 15-60 seconds 6 breaths or your choice.
To release, rotate the body and place the back toes on the mat.

Flow to:
Revolved Half-Moon/Parivritta Ardha Chandrasana

Physical Benefits:Improves circulation. Increases energy to the spine and low back. Strengthens the arches, ankles, knees and thighs. Stretches the hamstrings. Opens the chest and hips. Relieves menstrual discomfort and sciatica. Improves balance and coordination.
Mental Benefits: Builds focus. Develops willpower. Stimulated the mind. Relieves stress.
Counter Pose: Straight Forward Bend/Uttanasana
Adaptations/Variations: Use a block as an extension of the standing arm. Can also be done against the wall.

Contra Indications: Knee injury, Neck injury (keep gaze forward or to the floor). Low blood pressure. Vertigo

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