Dhanusha means a bow. The hands are used like a bowstring to pull the head, trunk and legs up and the posture resembles a bent bow. Therefore this asana is called Dhanurasana. This asana bends the spine backwards. It is a combination of Bhujangasana and Shalabhasana. If Bhujangasana, Shalabhasana and Dhanurasana are per¬formed together, they are very beneficial to the body. This trio works contrary to Halasana and Pashchimottanasana which bend the spine forward.
- Lie prone on the floor on the stomach, face downwards.
- Relax the muscles. Keep the arms resting alongside the body. Bend the legs at the knees.
- Raise the arms and hold the ankles with the hands. Raise the chest and the head.
- Fill the lungs with air. Straighten and stiffen the hands. Stiffen the legs also.
- The body now assumes the posture of a convex arch.
- If you lift the legs up, you can raise the chest. Hold the breath.
- Then exhale slowly. Attempt to keep the knees together.
In this asana, the abdomen supports the whole body.
- So practice this asana when the stomach is empty.
- The body in Dhanurasana pose gets good exercise if it is lightly rocked from left to right and forward and backward.
- Stay in this position as long as possible. It can be practiced five to six times.
Advantages of Dhanurasana :
- This asana gives a good massage to the abdomen so it cures prolonged constipation, dyspepsia and other disorders of the stomach.
- It cures spinal hump and rheumatism of the legs, the knees and the hands.
- It reduces fat. It activates the intestines and increases the digestive power.
- It nourishes all the abdominal organs by supplying blood to them.
- This asana is a blessing to those who suffer from gas and other intestinal disorders.
- Like Halasana, this asana rejuvenates the spine. It prevents bones from being untimely degenerated.
- It activates the pancreas and insulin is produced in proper proportion.
- One who regularly practices Halasana, Mayurasana and Dhanurasana never becomes lazy.
- One is always active and energetic.
- This asana is very beneficial specially to women because it alleviates the menstrual disorders and improves the reproductive system.