Lying Down Body Twist (Natrajasana)
It’s Wednesday, or as we know it “Hump Day.” This is the part of the week when, once we are passed it, it’s all downhill to the weekend. We’ve dug into Monday and Tuesday and perhaps need a bit of realignment and relaxation as we coast through the rest of our week.
This pose came to mind, as it is a gentle twist that still benefits the body and mind as much as a seated or standing twist does.
The Benefits of Lying Down Body Twist, sometimes called Supine Roll or Belly Twist, include stretching the spine as well as the quadriceps, stretching the abdomen a bit while giving a gentle squeeze or compression to the organs beneath the abdomen. Twists can also help alleviate bloating and aid in digestion, and they help promote deep relaxation in the mind and body.
Cautions for this pose would be any spinal or back injuries, or recent abdominal surgeries, recent or chronic injuries to the knees or hips.
Warm ups: Cat/Cow, windshield wiper knees (sitting on the floor with one hand on each side of you, slightly behind your hips as you lean back, bend your knees and gently drop them from side to side), standing with soft knees hula hoop hip circles, Table Pose while wagging tail slowly from side to side.
To get into Lying Down Body Twist:
- Lie down on your back with the arms out in T position (to the sides) palms facing down.
- Inhale. Engage the abdominal muscles and bring the knees up and in toward the chest.
- Exhale as you slowly drop the knees over to the left side of the body, trying to keep the knees as close to the left arm as possible and keep the shoulder blades flat on the floor (if the knees can’t come down all the way to the floor, you can also use blankets, a pillow or a block underneath to prop them on). You want this to be a relaxing pose, with no tension or effort, letting gravity pull your knees down to the floor.
- Look at the right finger tips (so your head is looking in the opposite direction as your knees).
- You can also close your eyes. Relax into the pose and breathe, holding the pose for about six to 10 breaths.
- Engage the abdomen muscles as you slowly bring the knees back up and then repeat on the opposite side.
Enjoy and remember, always listen to your body and be gentle with yourself.