Twists rotate the spine and stretch the muscles of the back. This helps to restore and retain the spine’s natural range of motion. In twists you work with the spine and the action of ‘lengthening’ is to create space between the vertebrae. When there's a lack of space our spine tends to slump or get stuck and our energy levels drop. Here are top 5 yoga twists for beginners.
Ardha Matsyendrasana – Half Spinal Twist Pose
Ardha Matsyendrasana usually appears as a seated spinal twist with many variations, and is one of the twelve basic asanas in many systems of Hatha Yoga. This is one of the few poses in the Basic Session that rotates the spine. Most bend the spinal column either backward or forward, but to become truly flexible it must be twisted laterally as well. The movement also tones the spinal nerves and ligaments, and improves the digestion.
Named after the saint Bharadvaj, this is another sitting asana (posture) that helps stretching spine, shoulders and hips. This posture massages the abdominal organs and improves digestion. It also relieves lumbago, cervicalgia and sciatica in addition to reducing stress and strengthening lower back for a mother during pregnancy.
In this video, Shantala shows the third variation of Marichyasana. Marichyasana is usually part of a long sequence of seated forward bends. In this asana or pose, you are not only bending forward, but also twisting. Calms the brain, Stretches the spine and shoulders, Stimulates abdominal organs like the liver and kidneys and Improves digestion.
Parivrtta Trikonasana – Revolved Triangle Pose
Parivrtta Trikonasana is a standing, deep-twisting yoga pose that stretches the whole body. It squeezes and massages your digestive organs, while challenging your balance and concentration. It is sometimes used as a counter-pose to Extended Triangle (Utthita Trikonasana).
Parivrtta Utkatasana – Revolved Chair Pose
Twisted chair pose is one of the best postures for detoxifying the body and building strength. The bent knees engages and builds strength in your quadriceps, and the twist is known for ringing out the toxins in the upper body.
From Chair with Prayer Hands, the upper body twists to one side with the heart opening towards the sky. The bottom elbow is on the outside of the opposite knee and the upper elbow reaches towards the sky. Gaze is towards the sky or to the earth if the neck is sensitive.
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