‘Padma’ means lotus. Padmasana acquires its name because when performed this resembles a lotus. This is also known as kamalasana. This is best suited for meditation and for reciting ‘mantras’. This is beneficial to both men and women.
Technique: sit on the ground, Spread the legs forward and place the right foot on the left thigh and left foot on the right thigh. Some persons like to place first the left foot on the right thigh and then to put the right foot on the left thigh. Either process is right. Let the left hand rest on the left knee and the right hand on the right knee. Let the tips of the thumbs of both the hands touch the tips of the index fingers keep the head and the spinal column erect. Keep your eyes close or open. Those who can place only one leg on the thigh should practices this asana daily with zeal. . They will be able to perform this asana easily after some practice. Stay in the final position for one or two minutes in the initial stage. Later, increase the time gradually.
(1) This asana is useful for japa, pranayama, Dharana (Retention or Concentration), Dhyana (meditation) and Samadhi (Self-realization).
(2) This asana stimulates the endocrine glands.
(3) This asana is useful to cure diseases like asthma, insomnia and hysteria. It is greatly beneficial to the persons suffering from insomnia.
(4) This asana relieves the body of its excessive fat and it increases the vitality.
This is a variation of Padmasan. This asana is not meant for meditation. This is chiefly meant for health-improvement and for making the body strong. This asana is difficult to perform. Those who are unable to practice this asana should not be disappointed. They should patiently try to accomplish the final position.
Technique: Sit in Padmasana with legs crossed. The heels should touch the low part of the abdomen. Swing the right arm behind the back of the shoulder and bring the hand near the left hip. Catch the left big toe. If you experience difficulty in holding the toes, bend slightly forward and make it convenient to hold the big toes. After catching the toes, sit erect as before and breathe normally. Stay in this position for one or two minutes in the initial stage. Gradually, increase the time till you can stay in the position for ten minutes.
(1) In this asana, the weight of the body is borne by the knees and the ankle-joint, so the joints of the legs become strong.
(2) Both the heels of the legs get sufficient exercise.
(3) The continuous practice of this asana helps the person the gradually overcome the weakness of the heart, the lungs, the stomach, the liver and the spine. Moreover, it reduces the pain in the knees and the ankle-joins.
(4) This asana helps to cure ailments like indigestion, flatulence, stomachache, etc.
(5) By praising this asana, one can get all the advantages of Padamasana.
Parvata means a mountain. This asana is also known as ‘Viyogasana’, because it involves a special technique of Yoga. Only healthy persons should practice this asana.
Technique: Sit in Padmasan. Join the palms of the hands Stretch the arums vertically up over the head. Some persons perform this asana sitting in the posture of Veer asana. But the Padmasana posture is better than the Veerasana one.
(1) As both the arms are kept vertically up in this asana, the ‘Prana’ is sublimated.
(2) If Suryabheda Pranayama or Anuloma-Viloma Pranayama is practiced for fifteen minutes before performing this (Parvatasana) asana, the lungs, the abdomen and the spine become strong and healthy.
UTTHITA PADMASANA (LOLASANA)
This asana is a variation of Padmasana. In this asana, the body is lifted up with both the hands on the floor. This is the reason why it is called ‘Utthita padmasana’ or Lolasana or Dolasana. This asana is more difficult than Padmasana because in this asna the whole body is balanced on both the hands.
Technique: Sit in Padmasana. Rest the palms on the floor besides the hips. Slowly raise the trunk without a jerk. The body should not quiver. Retain the breath in the lungs as long as the body is in the raised position. Exhale when the body is lowered down. While performing this asana, some beginners experience tremor in the hands because of some weakness. But it should not dishearten them. They should practice the asana patiently and with perseverance.
(1) This asana strengthens the joints and muscles of the arms.
(2) This asana helps to cure intestinal weakness, constipation, indigestion, dysentery, drowsiness, impurities of tubular channels, etc.
(3) This asana works as an appetizer which is a good characteristic of health.
‘Kukkuta’ is a Sanskrit word which means a cock. This asana or posture resembles that of a cock and hence the name is Kukkutaasana.
Technique: Sit in the Padamasana position. Insert the hands through the gap between the thighs and calves near the knees. Start with the fingers and gradually push the hands up to the elbows. Inhale and raise the body off the floor. Then continue normal breathing. Legs should be raised off the floor up to the level of the elbows Hans can easily be inserted in the gap if the Padmasana position is slightly raised. Pot-bellied persons will find it difficult to insert the hands in the gap between the calves and the thighs. In the beginning, remain in this position for ten seconds and gradually increase the time to a minute depending upon the age and ability of the aspirant.
(1) All the benefits derived from Utthita Paddmasana or Lolasaan are derived from this asana. The diseases which Utthita Padmasana cures can be cured by this asana also.
(2) This asana is beneficial to those who have worms in their intestines.
(3) This asana is very useful to women as it cures uneasiness, pain in the hips and heaviness caused by menstruation.
(4) This asana gives sufficient exercise to the arms. It strengthens the wrists, the elbows and the shoulders-the three important joints of the arms.
(5) This asana invigorates the body and delights the mind.