Santolanasana (Balancing Pose)

The word santolana means ‘balancing’, ‘to balance’. This asana is therefore directly translated as ‘balancing pose’.

Technique

Kneel on the ground.

Lean forwards and place the hands on the floor in front of the body.

Adjust the position of the hands, backwards or forwards, until both thighs and straight arms are vertical, the trunk being horizontal.

This is the starting position (identical to the starting position of marjariasana).

Stage 1

Raise your buttocks.

Straighten your legs.

Move your shoulders forwards, keeping the arms straight, while lowering the buttocks so that the legs and trunk lie in one straight line.

This is the final pose of stage 1 and is shown in the preceding figure.

Stay in this pose for a short duration.

Then move on to stage 2.

Stage 2

Carefully raise one arm.

Roll your body to one side so that your chest faces forwards.

Rest your uppermost arm along the trunk and thigh.

This is the final pose of stage 2 and is shown in the following diagram.

Then return to the original, face downward position.

Roll over on to the other side of the body in the same manner.

Return to the face downwards position.

Then proceed to stage 3.

 

Stage 3

Place both hands on the ground; take a short rest.

Then raise one arm and place it behind the back.

This is the final position of stage 3 shown in the above figure.

Maintain balance for a short duration.

Then return the hand to the floor.

Raise the other arm behind the back and repeat the same procedure.

Eventually return to the face downward position, both hands on the floor.

Move on to stage 4.

Stage 4

Raise one leg.

Stretch it backwards and upwards.

Both hands should remain on the ground at this stage. Hold the head upwards.

This is the final pose.

Maintain balance for a short duration.

Then lower the leg to the ground.

Repeat with the other leg.

This is the end of the entire practice.

Breathing, awareness and other details

Breathing should be normal throughout. Fix your attention on maintaining balance. Refer to ‘General Details’ later.

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