Sunday, May 08, 2005

Mother's Day Twist

I just got back from the hospital. I peeked into the room and there was my mom, sound asleep. Some Mother's day.

She spent most of it in the emergency room with abdominal pain.

I think the docs are trying to rule out gall bladder disease.

Which got me thinking...what can you do to ensure that your abdominal organs are the best they can be? Several types of poses come to mind.

I recommend forward bends and twists.

Forward bends, especially those with the ardha padma component, provide strong external stimulation, and therefore improved circulation, to the abdominal organs.

Ardha padma is half lotus. Try sitting with your legs extended out in front. Now bend your right knee and bring your right heel up by your left hip. You'll need to really externally rotate your right thigh so you don't hurt your right knee. Take your time. As your body allows you, draw the heel of your right foot back deeper into your lower left abdomen. Now bend forward. You'll notice your heel makes its presence known.

Twisting poses provide a wringing action to the digestive and elimination systems. An easy start is jatahara parivartanasana variation, in which you lie down, bring your knees in toward your chest and then twist your hips and legs to one side. Seated twists can sometimes be even more effective.

When you combine forward bending and twisting you've got something really powerful. Janu sirsasana is just such a pose. I wrote a message about this pose last month. You can read it at

But here's the real message: Don't just do forward bendings and twists because you want to fix your digestive ills. Do a wide variety of yoga poses regularly for overall great health.

Don't just read about it. Get up. Experience it. Experience yoga!

Kevin Perry

p.s., What's "The Mother of All Asanas?" According to Iyengar, and many others, it's salamba sarvangasana, aka shoulderstand. Don't you wonder why?

p.p.s., Ardha baddha padma paschimottanasana is a pose that's hard to say and just about as hard to do. But it's not hard to remember once you figure out what each of the word roots means. We'll review this pose, and some other real doozies, in a section of the Experience Sanskrit workshop called More Than a Mouthful. You won't want to miss this. It's a VERY fun way to practice saying some of the hardest pose names you can imagine. Click here to find out more about our Experience Sanskrit workshop coming up June 25, 2005 at the Saint Louis YogaSource.

p.p.p.s., If you are a person who prays, please say a prayer for my mom today. She's still in the hospital. Say one for your mom, too. It may be the best Mother's Day gift you've ever given.

p.p.p.p.s., Send me an email today at And I'll send you a list of all of the poses I recommend for intra-abdominal health, with links to pictures, so you can see the poses as you read about them. I promise I'll never give your contact information or email address to anyone for any reason.

Copyright 2005. All rights reserved by Mo Yoga LLC.


Post a Comment

<< Home