The wise Patanjali wrote in his book Yogasutra: Stihra sukham asanam. The position should be stable and comfortable … This could also describe our backs! Our spine is an incredible combination of power (stihra) and flexibility (sukham). In Sanskrit, the language of yoga, the spine is called Meru Danda. Translated into English, that means something like the center of the universe. The back spine is our center. It holds us upright. Strong bones and large muscles give us form and protect the sensitive nerves. Flexible ligaments and tendons give the back freedom to move in as many directions as possible.
In our everyday lives, we turn around, lean to the sides and bend forward, but we do not bend backwards. Why? One does not need to do it in everyday life, only in the circus, right? But many of us spend the days seated. Have you ever considered how much time your are spending sitting each day? When you start to think about it, you realize how many hours of sitting there are: in the office, in the car, on the train, on the sofa, etc. If we do not move our backs in as many directions as possible, there is a risk of the joints our spine become stiff and even merge into each other. In addition, the muscles, ligaments and tendons around the spine can shorten and disturb the freedom of movement of the back.
In addition, sitting long times is often the cause of general tension in the body and muscles as well as bad posture, fatigue, obesity, and even cardiovascular problems. Of course we have to sit, otherwise life becomes too complicated, but it is good to be aware that sitting does not promote our health, and above all, it makes the spine unhappy. On the other hand, back bends on the yoga mat promote our health by increasing the mobility of the back while strengthening the muscles around the spine, increasing our energy levels and being beneficial for our cardiovascular system and metabolism.
The good news is that Gotta Joga has created special backbend yoga sequences for you! These practices are highly recommended for all of you who want to work on the wonderful balance between stability and freedom, physically, mentally and emotionally.
Have fun bending!
Anu Visuri, Yoga Teacher