[Yoga Pose] Eagle Variation:
Enhance Your Sexual Vitality and Open Your Joints
YOGA SEQUENCE BY RACHEL BRATHEN
eagle pose variation. photo: ben kane
The Benefits of Eagle Pose (Garurasana)
Editors Note: Eagle pose (Garurasana) is an intermediate yoga pose with a number of healing properties, particular related to the joints, sexualorgans and reproductive system as a whole. Eagle pose opens the 14 largest joints in the skeletal system and improves flexibility in the knees, ankles, hips, wrists, elbows, scapula and deltoids. It also has the added benefit of supplying fresh, oxygenated blood to the reproductive system, sex organs and kidneys, which are all believed to be intimately related in the Chinese Medicine tradition. This has the overall effect of increasing sexual vitality and has a gentle balancing effect hormonally.
In the variations below, eagle pose also has strengthening effects on the stomach and lower back muscles. These variations of eagle pose also gently massage many internal organs such as the liver, spleen, stomach and colon, which stimulates detoxification and optimal function.
Eagle Pose (Variation): Core Exercise
Step 1 Lie down. Cross the right leg over the left, hooking the right foot around the left ankle. Extend your arms out to the sides, perpendicular to the body, and then cross the left elbow over the right in front of you. You can either press the backs of the hands together here, or bring the palms all the way together. Keep the toes pressing into the mat, inhale, and reach your arms over your head until your fingertips can touch the mat above you.
Step 2 Exhale and lift the legs and arms off the mat so that your knees and elbows connect, pulling the navel into the spine, feeling the abdominals engage. Inhale to lower, touching the fingertips and the toes to the mat. Exhale to connect elbows and knees. Repeat 10 times and then switch sides with both arms and legs to do the other side.
Eagle Pose (Variation): Seated Eagle
Step 1 In a seated position, inhale to extend the arms straight out to the sides. Exhale and give yourself a big hug, crossing the right elbow over the left. Then place either the backs of the hands together or the palms of the hands together if you have the space. With your hands at the center of your face, relax your shoulders and keep the spine long.
Step 3 Exhale and fold forward. Inhale and come back up. Repeat 5 times and then fold forward and take a few breaths here. Create space in the upper midback and breathe deeply into the shoulders. When you’re ready, come back up and repeat with the left arm crossed over the right and the opposite leg in front.
Excerpted from Yoga Girl by Rachel Brathen. Copyright © 2014 by Rachel Brathen. Originally published in 2014 in Sweden by Bonnier Fakta. Reprinted by permission of Touchstone/Simon & Schuster.
About The Author
Rachel Brathen is a New York Times bestselling author, motivational speaker, and world-renowned yoga instructor residing in Aruba. After graduating school in Stockholm she traveled to Costa Rica where she found the joy of incorporating yoga into her everyday life. After moving to Aruba in early 2010 she started teaching yoga full time. Rachel is best known as Yoga Girl on Instagram where she shares wisdom, inspiration, fears and struggles alongside photos of the ocean, her yoga practice and her life. She leads workshops all across the globe, focusing on handstands, arm balances, vinyasa foundation and fearless living. Find her on Instagram @Yoga_Girl and online at rachelbrathen.com.