This yoga pose is a part of the Surya Namaskara and is a set of nine stretching moves that can be practiced to prepare for the next posture, “Visvamitrasana”.
Most of us have tried Yoga in our childhood years, but it totally changed our life. If you are also one of those who are interested in Yoga, then you must be totally aware of the name of Visvamitrasana. Visvamitrasana is the name of one of the main postures in Yoga and it is also the name of the posture. Due to its difficult nature, it is the first posture that students are taught.
Named after the admirable Hindu sage Vishwamitra, Vishwamitrasana is a challenging yoga pose that serves as an arm balance, hamstring stretch and hip extension. Many complex elements are combined in this beautiful pose, so it takes time and practice to master.
Below we give the main steps to reach the fullest expression of Vishwamitrasana.
1. Extended lateral angular position
Opening the hips, shoulders and chest, the extended side angle pose aligns the body for the final master pose, Vishwamitrasana. The extended side angle is a common pose in yoga classes and helps strengthen the legs and hips, which are essential for the final pose.
Tip: Stretch from the shoulder blade of the back leg and reach forward with the fingertips of the top hand, stretching the side of the body. Then turn your chest toward the ceiling to allow for a deeper opening.
Modification : If the forearm does not reach the ground, try placing a block under the lowered arm to reduce the distance and effect of the stretch.
2. Side rail (with arm extended)
Named after the sage (Vasishtha), the side plank pose (Vasishthasana) strengthens the whole body while stretching the sides, which are activated in Vishwamitrasana. This balancing posture forces the body to maintain a neutral position of the spine, which goes against gravity.
Tip: Tense your abs and quadriceps and try to find a neutral point for your hips (not too high or too low). Imagine the Tadasana pose, turned to the side.
Modification : If the strain on your shoulders is too great, lower your leg to a 90-degree angle and rest it on your shin.
3. Head down to knees pose
An intense stretch of the posterior thigh muscles and the lateral part of the body, the head posture in rotation to the knees (Parivrtta Janu Sirsana) is as interesting to perform as it is to say. The pose requires rotation of the chest and open shoulders, as in Vishwamitrasana, while passively stretching the back and glutes.
Tip: Remember to keep your sit bones on the ground to maintain alignment in angular and lateral bending.
Modification : If the upper arm cannot reach the extended leg, use the yoga strap to relieve the posture.
4. Position of the compass
In the compass pose (Parivrtta Surya Yantrasana), the upper half of the body is almost in the same position as in Vishvamitrasana. Practicing this pose thus naturally prepares the body, particularly the shoulder girdle, spine and hamstrings, for more difficult postures.
Tip: Before straightening, turn the extended leg as far up as possible. Use your forearm as a footrest to gently support your body weight, and use your legs at an angle to avoid twisting your ankles.
Modification : Again, you can use a belt if the pose is not quite reachable (literally). Stay upright to prevent the torso from sagging.
5. Ardha Vishvamitrasana
The Ardha Vishwamitrasana is a combination of all the preparatory postures and includes aspects of arm balancing, hamstring stretching, twisting, hip opening and shoulder opening. Half Vishvamitrasana, as the name suggests (ardha = half), this pose is modified by leaving one shin on the ground.
Tip: Squeeze the raised leg and the tied hand together to stabilize the pose. Turn the open trunk to the ceiling and look up.
Modification : Place a block under the arm on the floor to raise the upper body slightly – this reduces the intensity of the side stretch and makes the pose more comfortable to review.
Vishwamitrasana is definitely a difficult posture – even some of the preparatory postures can seem difficult. But once you master the above postures, Vishwamitrasana will easily become a part of your yoga repertoire. Remember to put the foot on the ground, stretch the side of the body and bend the raised leg.
It is also helpful to continue to pull the scapulae toward the midline to promote a deeper opening of the rib cage and a fuller rotation of the spine.
Vishvamitrasana is not limited to physical strength, but also requires a wisdom of will, and requires a unique balance of effort and concentration. Like a wise person, you must pay attention throughout the process, learn from your experiences, and keep practicing.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you do Visvamitrasana pose?
Vishvamitrasana is a yoga pose that is done by sitting on the floor with your legs extended in front of you. You then bend your right knee and place it on the ground, while keeping your left leg straight. You then bring your left foot to rest on top of the right knee, and then extend both arms out to either side.
How do you prepare for bridge pose?
Bridge pose is a great pose to prepare for because it strengthens the back and core muscles. To prepare for bridge pose, start by lying on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Place your hands behind you, palms facing each other. Inhale deeply as you lift your hips off the floor and straighten your legs so that they are perpendicular to the ground. Keep your arms straight as you press into them with a slight bend in elbows. Hold this position for five deep breaths.
What are the basic yoga poses for beginners?
The basic yoga poses for beginners are the following:
- Downward-facing dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)
- Plank pose (Vasisthasana)
- Cobra pose (Bhujangasana)
- Warrior I pose (Virabhadrasana I)
- Warrior II pose (Virabhadrasana II)
- Triangle pose (Trikonasana)
- Extended side angle pose (Utthita Parsvakonasana)
- Extended side angle pose with arm balance (Utthita Parsvakonasana A)
- Standing forward bend (Uttanasana)
- 10. Standing backbend (Urdhva Mukha Svanasana)