This week’s pose is called Half Moon Pose or Ardha Chandrasana. I chose this one because it's been showing up a lot in my practice lately for multiple reasons. The number one reason is to help keep me balanced in my life with being a new mom, working full time at a corporate desk job, and my dedication and fulfillment in teaching yoga.
Benefits of Half Moon Pose
Half Moon Pose strengthens your ankles, legs, glutes, spine, and abs. It gives your spine, shoulders, calves, hamstrings, and groin a good stretch. As with every yummy inversion, this pose relieves stress and depression by turning your head upside down that when you get back up, you'll begin to see the world with more clarity and in a more positive light.
Other therapeutic effects of practicing this pose include increasing fertility as well as relief from anxiety, fatigue, menstrual pain, back pain, sciatica, osteoporosis, indigestion, gastritis, and constipation.
Half Moon Pose Step-By-Step
- Start from standing at the top of your mat. Bring your right foot all the way back so you're at a Low Lunge with your left leg, hands framing the left foot.
- From here, engage your core, bring your right hand to your right hip and lift up your right foot and straighten your right leg out behind you, balancing on the left leg with your left hand on the floor. Gaze is at the left hand.
- Make sure your left leg is strong by engaging your glutes and quads, lifting up at the kneecap, and anchoring the four corners of your left foot, rooting into the earth for support.
- Now, rotate your right hip back, stacking it on top of your left hip. So instead of your hips being parallel to the earth, we want it to be parallel to the right side wall of the room.
- Next, energetically extend your right hand towards the sky, palm facing the right side of the room. Lift the shoulders out of your ears by gluing your shoulders blades onto your back. Maybe imagine you're holding onto a pencil in between your shoulder blades.
- Stay with it for 5 slow, deep breaths.
- Slowly come out of it the same way you came in. Repeat the steps for the other side.
- For the beginners, you can use a block under the balancing hand to give you extra length and balance.
- Try concentrating on that dynamic stretch, pulling the crown of your head to the front of the room while energetically pulling the heel of your extended leg to the back of the room.
- In time, you can lift your foot higher when you build on that range of flexibility and space in your hips. The goal here is to keep your hips stacked and your heart shining outward and forward.
Hope you enjoy using this great pose in your practice. As always, if you have any questions or comments please feel free to comment below. I would be delighted to answer them.