What is it?
Marajariasana to Bitilasana are 2 gentle postures which can be performed together. They warm up the spine and stretch the abdominals. They can also improve flexibility by allowing spinal fluid and blood to circulate freely to the vertebrae and muscles.
When to avoid?
If you experience any sensitivity in the knees or wrists then performing this in box position should be adapted by using blocks, blankets or a padded mat to ensure the joints are protected. If you have any knee or wrist injuries, or for any reason should not be weight baring then this should be avoided in box position, but can be practiced in a seated pose. If you have any neck injuries, you should maintain neutral alignment of the neck during this asana.
Benefits during Pregnancy & Postnatally
The benefits of these poses are universal; eases lower back & hip pain, reduces symptoms of sciatica, gently stretches the abdominals, strengthens shoulders and alleviates stiffness.
It's also a handy pose for helping your baby into an optimal fetal position as it allows gravity to bring your baby's spine into the curve of your womb.
Postnatally, you can do this with your little one lying in-between your hands - like a little game of peek-a-boo!
How to do it
This can be practiced in box position or seated; easy, hero, in a chair.
If you are comfortable to perform this in box position;
align your wrists with your shoulders, fingers spread wide, gently curving the tips into the mat (think of a paw).
knees a bit wider than a hip distance apart, tops of the feet connected to the mat, toes pointing toward the back of your mat. The crown of your head should be pointing forwards.
exhaling while rounding your spine, slowly drawing the chin to the chest (it doesn't have to touch - that's just where you are intending it to go). If you're pregnant, it's as if you are bringing your baby towards you; if you've had your baby - think about pulling you belly button in towards your spine.
pausing here; not holding your breath but noticing how that feels
as you inhale; arching the lower back and slowly lifting your gaze towards the sky, drawing the shoulder blades away from your ears, relaxing your jaw and all the muscles in your face. Again, pausing to notice how it feels.
Remember if you experience any neck, wrist or knee issues to modify as needed.
As you move between the two asanas, take note of your wrists ensuring you are not allowing the weight of your upper body to rest there. Keep the arms strong and push the ground away.
If you'd prefer to perform this in a seated pose; you can do so in a chair or in a comfortable seated pose of your choice on the floor. If you choose a chair; ensure your feet are flat on the floor, your knees are in line with your hips and about a hip width apart. Then place your hands on your knees for leverage, following the same pattern of movement discussed above.
These are wonderful poses to do at anytime; while you're at work, during the day, before you go to bed, in the middle of the night when you're struggling to get comfortable. You can even add a little lions breath to it if you want to increase the benefits! I've posted a great video showing you how to practice lions breath.
Let me know how you find them and if you find them beneficial.
Kelly 💕 ☀️ 💕
A Little Extra