Asana of the Month: Astavakrasana (Eight Angle Pose

Each month we choose a pose to focus on in each class through strong attention to alignment, variations, and/or modifications as a way to grow and expand our yogic horizons.
According to Light on Yoga, Astavakrasana is dedicated to the sage Astavakra who, while still in his mother’s womb, corrected his father’s recitation of verses from the Rig Veda. Enraged, his father cursed his son to be born crooked in eight places, thus earning the boy the name Astavakra, or Eight-Crooks (angles). Despite his father’s curse, Astavakra remained a faithful son and became a great scholar. He later went on to avenge his father after the latter lost a philosophical debate, challenging (and defeating) the man who had bested his father. The father then blessed Astavakra and the boy’s deformity vanished.
Astavakrasana (Eight-Angle Pose):
Asta = eight
Vakra = bent, curved
Benefits (according to Yoga Journal):
· Strengthens the wrists and arms
· Tones the abdominal muscles
· Wrist, elbow, or shoulder injuries
Preparatory Poses:
· Uttanasana (Standing Forward Fold)
· Utthita Parsvakonasana (Extended Side-Angle Pose, placing the lower arm to the inside of the front leg)
· Marichyasana I (Marichi’s Pose)
· Paripurna & Ardha Navasana (Full & Half Boat Pose)
· Chaturanga Dandasana (Four-Limbed Staff Pose)
· Adho Mukha Vrksasana (Downward-Facing Tree Pose, aka Handstand)
· Eka Hasta Bhujasana (Elephant’s Trunk Pose)
· Lolasana (Pendant Pose)
Song that Most Comes to Mind While in the Posture:

Jake Owen’s “Eight-Second Ride”

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