All yoga poses have benefits, physically and mentally, but I have chosen ten poses or asanas, as they are called in Indian Sanskrit, which is beneficial especially for kiteboarders!
There’s a lot more to each pose such as the breathing sensation, where to engage etc. But in this article I have tried to keep it short. It’s a good idea to keep each pose for a couple of breaths, in through the nose and out through the nose. Inhale all the way down to your stomach and exhale completely.
1. Sun Salutations – Surya Namaskar
Why: Warm stretch and tone the muscles of the legs, hips, arms and spine. Tone and stimulate the internal organs. Teach us to flow with the rhythm of the breath.
It’s a good idea to do more salutations in a row without pausing in between. A good amount is five. (One is when you have repeated the cycle on both legs)
Sun salutations can be used as a great warm up before kiting.
- Start in tadasana – mountain pose – Inahle / exhale
- Inhale –sweep your arms towards the sky and activate your buttocks as you slightly bend back.
- Exhale come down with a straight back – heart leading to a standing forward fold.
- Inhale – step your right leg back into a low lounge and place your knee and foot down – look up.
- Hold your breath and step back into a plank.
- Exhale knees, chest, chin down
- Inhale cobra
- Exhale tuck your toes under and lift your hips back into downward facing dog.
- Inhale step your right foot between your hands, lower your knees and feet to the ground.
- Exhale your left leg between your hands, look at your knees.
- Inhale come up with a straight back, tighten your buttocks in a slight backbend
- Exhale your hands in front of your heart.
- Repeat on opposite site
2. Downward facing dog / Adho muka svanasana
Why: Stretches and strengthens the spine, hips, legs, arms and shoulder. Kiters often feel a lot tension on their shoulders – downward facing dog, will you give you a nice release in this area.
- Come to hands and knees, with hands below the shoulders and knees below the hips. Walk your hands slightly forward of the shoulders and spread all fingers wide. Curl all ten toes under and lift your hips to the sky. Try to elongate through the spine and hips. Your feet don’t have to touch the ground.