Halasana or plow pose is a great asana for stretching the back and providing flexion to the spine. Therefore it increases spinal flexibility and also helps release any physical or nervous tension. It stretches the legs, particularly the back of the thighs and the calves. It has a nice, calming effect on the mind and on an energetic level it activates vishudi, the throat chakra.
1. Start in a supine position with the palms on the mat.
2. Start to raise the legs, pressing the palms on the mat.
3. Once the legs are above the hips, start to raise the pelvis, and then the upper body.
4. Bring the legs above the head, with the toes on the mat and legs straight.
5. Bring the hands together at the back and press on the mat to continue opening the back.
6. Keep the neck stabilized on the mat.
Karnapidasana - Ear pressure pose
From halasana, bend your knees and bring them towards the ground, keeping them on either side of your ears. Breathe deeply as you feel the stretch of the cervical spine. You can wrap your arms around the back of your thighs or have them resting on the mat, parallel to one another, bringing your shoulder blades together.
Stretches the legs, groins, hips and back
Improves flexibility in the spine
Stimulates the digestive organs
Stretches the whole spine
Improves flexibility of the spine
Releases symptoms of stress and anxiety
Calms the mind
Activates vishudi, the throat chakra
Contraindications: (consult this pose with your general medical practitioner if you have the following)
Low or high blood pressure
Back injury/spine injury