STAGE 1 Remain in the base position or a cross-legged pose. Stretch the arms in front of the body at shoulder level. The hands should be open with the palms facing up. Bend the arms at the elbows and touch the fingers to the shoulders. Keep the upper arm parallel to the floor. Straighten the arms again. This is one round. Repeat 10 times.
STAGE 2 Extend the arms sideways at shoulder level, hands open and palms facing the ceiling. Bend the arms at the elbows and touch the fingers to the shoulders. Keep the upper arms parallel to the floor. Again straighten the arms sideways. Repeat 10 times.
BREATHING Inhale while straightening the arms. Exhale while bending the arms.
AWARENESS On the movement of the elbow joint and arm muscles, and the breath.
ELBOW JOINT ROTATION
Remain in the base position or a cross-legged pose. Stretch the right arm in front of the body at shoulder level. The right hand can be open, or loosely closed. Support the right upper arm with the left hand. Bend the right arm at the elbow, rotating the elbow joint so that the lower arm and hand move clockwise. Keep the upper arm steady and parallel to the floor. The movement should be smooth. The fingers should almost touch the right shoulder as they move past. Practise slowly 10 times clockwise and then 10 times anticlockwise. Gently lower the right arm. Repeat on the other side.
BREATHING Inhale on the upward stroke. Exhale on the downward stroke.
AWARENESS On the rotation of the elbow joint with the breath and on keeping the upper arm steady.
To begin with, the left hand can support the right arm just above the elbow, so that the upper arm remains steady throughout the practice.
Text: Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha Swami Satyananada Saraswati Yoga Publications Trust, Munger, Bihar, India Illustrations: Elly-Lynne Tiburcio