Ardha chakrasana, also known as Half Wheel Pose or Ardha Urdhva Dhanurasana, is a challenging yoga pose that resembles a half-wheel. It’s named after the Sanskrit words “ardha” (half), “chakra” (wheel), and “asana” (posture).
In Ardha chakrasana, the body weight is supported by the hands and feet, with the spine arched backwards and the chest lifted towards the ceiling. The pose opens up the chest, shoulders, and front of the body while strengthening the core, legs, and wrists.
Ardha Chakrasana is a more accessible version of Chakrasana that is still beneficial for the body. It is a good pose for beginners or those with limited flexibility or strength.
Benefits of practicing Ardha Chakrasana:
- Improves flexibility and range of motion in the spine
- Strengthens the core muscles, back muscles, and leg muscles
- Opens up the chest, shoulders, and lungs, improving breathing
- Stimulates the digestive and lymphatic systems
- Reduces stress and anxiety
- Boosts energy levels
Here are the steps on how to do Ardha Chakrasana:
- Start in Downward-Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana).
- Step your feet forward so that they are hip-width apart.
- Bend your knees and place your hands on the floor in front of your feet, shoulder-width apart.
- Inhale and lift your hips up, tucking your tailbone under.
- Keep your spine long and your head facing forward.
- As you exhale, press your hands and feet into the floor and arch your back, lifting your chest towards the ceiling.
- Hold the pose for a few breaths, then exhale and lower your hips back down to the ground.
Here are some tips for practicing Ardha Chakrasana safely:
- Warm up your body with gentle stretches before attempting the pose.
- Start with a modified version of the pose, such as Bridge Pose or Setu Bandhasana.
- Listen to your body and don’t push yourself too hard.
- Use blocks or straps to support your body if needed.
- Hold the pose for only a few breaths at first, and gradually increase the time as you get stronger.