The Dancer Pose takes its name and inspiration from the Hindu god Shiva's divine jig. Master it and you'll feel like performing your own dance of joy.
Step 1: Mountain Pose Stand at the front of your mat with your spine erect and your weight evenly distributed between both feet.
Step 2: Shift weight & bend knee Shift your weight to your left leg, and bend your right knee so your right heel rises toward your butt.
Step 3: Grasp right foot Grasp the right foot with the right hand.
TIP: Try to grab the inner arch of the foot so that your thumb is pointing in the same direction as the big toe. If you have trouble or are unsure whether you're holding the foot correctly, hold its outer edge instead to protect your shoulder.
Step 4: Raise left hand While holding the right foot, raise the left hand forward and up toward the sky.
Step 5: Bend forward Slowly bend forward as you lift your right foot up and away from your torso. Try to keep your right arm straight, lifting your foot up so that your spine arches into a back bend as your ribcage opens.
Step 6: Position stretch Pull your right shin perpendicular to the mat, with the thigh parallel or higher.
TIP: Another name for this pose is the Balancing Bow: think of your back as the bow and your right hand and foot as creating the string that's being drawn back.
Step 7: Hold pose Hold the pose for a few smooth, even breaths.
Step 8: Release pose Release the pose by releasing the back bend first and then, standing upright, releasing the right foot to the ground.
Step 9: Repeat pose Repeat the pose on the other side, grasping your left ankle with your left hand, and holding it for the same number of breaths as you did on the right.
Step 10: Release pose Release the pose by releasing the back bend first, and then, standing upright, releasing the left foot to the ground. Shall we dance?
FACT: The dance of Shiva represents both the destruction and creation of the world, enacting the cycle of birth, death and rebirth.
You Will Need
Comfortable clothing suitable for stretching and moving
A calm place where you won't be distracted or disturbed