December 7, 2017
I just created a new yoga pose. I call it Katakasana, which means, "chain link pose". There are several reasons why I have chosen this name, which I will elaborate on.
Firstly, when I look at this image I notice that each arm is paired with a leg to make a loop. There are two loops created, one being oriented vertically and the other horizontally. The same relationship occurs between two links of a chain, each being oriented 90 degrees of the other. In the second image, I have highlighted these loops for clarification of how this shape appears in the pose.
Each arm is paired with its contra-lateral leg, making the two resulting loops inextricably linked. This link is occuring in the core region of the body. We can see that the blue loop is basically horizontal, being created by the leg laying flat with a 60 degree bend in the knee. The green loop is vertical, created by the arm reaching over the foot which is vertical.
This pose is executed fully when the back leg attempts to straighten, activating the quads, and when the front foot attempts to plantar flex, activating the calf muscles. The position of the arms prevents the ankle and knee from moving very much, but the activation of those muscles is essential for the purpose of this pose, which is to stretch the arms and shoulder girdle. When the legs engage as described, the arms are pulled apart in opposite directions very powerfully, thereby decompressing the shoulder girdle in the horizontal plane. This will create a fantastic stretch in the rotator cuff muscles of the front arm, as well as the bicep. It also stretches the pectorals, decompresses the base of the neck, opens the tissues of the upper quadrant of the deep core muscles and intercostals, opens the lungs, improves the integration of the upper core with the shoulder girdle and rib cage, and also serves to strengthen the legs as considerable leg activation is required. When the legs engage, the arms are stretched out like a chain. This stretch feels very good for people who use their arms a lot and develop tension around the neck and shoulders as a result.
Have you ever worked so much that you felt like you just wanted someone to pull your arms off? I certainly have. I know many massage therapists feel this way after doing many consecutive massages. Well if this sounds like you, then you may derive some relief from this pose. It does require a considerable amount of flexibility in the hips in order to pull this off, however. You must be able to hook the front of your elbow over your big toe, with a straight leg as you can see in the photo. But if you have the flexibility, then you can put it to good use here. It may be just what you need to fix that shoulder. As with any yoga pose, if it hurts in a bad way, then don't do it!
"Yoga And Sacred Geometry" Samuel Palmer's second book.
This book reveals the controlling geometry that underlies the structure of the human body and shows how we can use this knowledge to refine and perfect our yoga practice, gain insight into the true purpose of yoga and become a master of your body. Packed with marvelous full color illustrations.
e-book, 172 pages. 3D Computer generated illustrations.