Sequence of Asanas in Yoga

Asanas / December 8, 2021

  • 1. Standing poses are a good preparation for forward bends and also for back bends.

    2. Adho Mukha Svanasana is a good preparation for all poses and also a good warm down after both forward bends and back bends.
    There is almost never a bad time to do Adho Mukha Svanasana. &nbsp If you are doing Adho Mukha Svanasana near the beginning of a session, it is an active time, a time when you are moving into a working mode, so don't lower yourself into Adho Mukha Virasana (Child's Pose); rather step up into Uttanasana to maintain the energy of the session. &nbsp Conversely, if you are doing the pose as a warm down, it can be relaxing to rest in Child's Pose afterward.

    3. Don't alternate back and forth between forward bends and back bends.
    It is true that one good way to wind down from a session of back bends is to use a few gentle forward bends to recover and refresh the spine. &nbsp However, one way that yoga was taught in the West, especially in the early days of yoga in the West, was that you should alternate "pose and counter-pose, " moving back and forth between a forward bend and a back bend to move the spine in both directions. &nbsp Generally this is not a good practice. &nbsp Generally, we devote entire sessions to a particular theme - standing poses, forward bends, or back bends, for instance. &nbsp Even if the theme of the session includes poses from multiple classes of asanas, a strict arrangement of "pose and counter-pose" is not a skilful way of sequencing. &nbsp Generally one pose should lead you into the next pose by means of its similarity with the next pose, not by means of opposition.

    4. It is not good to sequence active or heating poses after cooling poses.
    Once you have warmed-up and begun to engage in the heart of your yoga session, if it is an active session, you will generate a certain amount of heat. &nbsp You want to maintain this heat for the duration of the active part of your session because it lends to the flexibility of your spine and body in general and keeps you mentally prepared for engaging in active asana work. &nbsp Once you begin to cool down from your session, it is not good to have any more heating or active poses. &nbsp Rather, you should gently move your body into preparation for Savasana. &nbsp That being said, it can be initially confusing as to which poses are heating and which ones are cooling. &nbsp Ultimately whether a pose is heating (active) or cooling (passive) may depend not on the pose itself, but on the level of the practitioner. &nbsp For instance, in general Sirsasana is heating and Sarvangasana is cooling, however someone with a regular, lengthy Sirsasana practice may find Sirsasana very relaxing and cooling, especially brief periods in the pose. &nbsp In general, heating poses include: &nbsp standing poses, inversions (which are cooling when done supported), arm balances, back bends (cooling when done supported), and active twists. &nbsp Examples of cooling poses include: &nbsp forward bends in general (especially seated forward bends), Supta Padangusthasana (especially cooling after back bends), Supta Baddha Konasana, and twists done gently. &nbsp Almost all poses with a Jalandhara Bandha-type chin lock (e.g. Sarvangasana, Halasana, Setu Bandha, and Viparita Karani) are cooling to the brain and body. &nbsp After doing poses in which the chin is in Jalandhara Banda, no more active poses should be done because these are definitely cooling for the body...

Source: www.bradpriddy.com