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Rabbit Position
By Anil Sharma on June 24, 2011 at 8:33 am

The real name of rabbit position is shashankasana. Shashi means Moon in Sanskrit. Ank means smear. So shashankasana means the asana in which you maintain the position of the shadow on the moon. This shadow resembles the shape of hare or rabbit. That is why most people call it rabbit position or hare position.

Rabbit position is the counter position of the camel position. In camel position the spine is bent backwards. Counter to this, in rabbit position, the spine is bent forward. We achieve the desired impact on the spine by performing these two asanas one after another. In tandem they give complete relief to the spine and the spine is toned up completely. This gives relief to the complete body.

Benefits of Rabbit Position:

  • The spine gets pleasurable relief when it is brought parallel to the earth. This provides rest to the spine.
  • Liver, spleen and stomach are impacted and hence they are activated.
  • While maintaining this position the diaphragm below the lungs is loosened. The capacity to breathe up to the abdomen increases. The diaphragm is stretched and this helps to increase the depth of your breath. Feel the throbbing in your naval. This is highly beneficial for asthmatic patients.
  • This position alleviates all type of anger and emotional instability. It has the capacity to cure even depressions.

Technique of Rabbit Position:

Free video by author explaining rabbit position. Sit down in vajrasana. Keep the waist and neck erect. Inhale slowly and deeply and while inhaling raise the arms together over the head. Your biceps clutching your ears. Stay in this position while full of breath and stretch your shoulders backwards a few seconds. Now while exhaling bend forwards along with your arms. Your buttocks stay locked to the ankles. Loosen your arms till the hands and elbows rest on the floor. Your forehead or chin may also touch the ground. Keep your breathing normal in this rabbit position (shashankasana). While inhaling stretch the arms and return slowly to the vajrasana position.

Point of concentration is Agya chakra between your eye brows about an inch inside.  Make sure that while bending forward your buttocks should not come off their position betweens the heels. While maintaining the position, when your arms, from elbows to hands are resting on floor and your forehead is touching the ground you will feel an unearthly tranquility descend on your squeezed body.

Enjoy this serenity. God be with you!

Camel Position
By Anil Sharma on June 20, 2011 at 7:44 am

Camel position is also called usthra asana in yogic language. Usthra means a camel in Sanskrit. In the final position of this asana, the body is curved like a camel. Hence its name, usthra asana (camel position). During the normal functioning of an individual, all through the day, whatever his profession, we usually bend forward. As a result of this the spine is disturbed only in a particular forward bending position. Usthra asana rectifies the possibilities of defects caused by this natural tendency to bend forward. This asana is practiced while sitting in vajrasana.

Technique of camel position:

See video by author explaining camel position. Sit in vajrasana and stand up on the knees. Keep the distance of your knees equal to the width of your shoulders. Both the feet behind the back should be parallel to each other. The soles of your feet should be pointing upwards. Now hold your waist with both hands. The tips of your thumbs should be touching each other. The fingers pointing towards your navel and your hands clutching both the sides of your waist. Now close your eyes. This is extremely important and obligatory as one can feel giddy while bending backwards. Now inhale slowly and simultaneously bend your neck and back backwards slowly. Stay in this position as long as possible. While staying, keep your breathing normal. The advanced students (sadhaks) can remove their hands from the waist and hang them loose backwards touching the soles of you feet. Come back to the original position slowly and rest in vajrasana.

The point of concentration should be the whole spine. The important thing to keep in mind is that the naval should remain outwards as far as possible so that it may have the most impact on the spine. While returning to the original position the movement should be utterly slow. Don’t make haste. No wonder “Haste makes Waste”. This is true about all yogic processes and is extremely important for any serious student (sadhak) of yoga.