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The Chakrasana is one of the most beneficial of all yoga poses. Also known as the “Wheel Pose”, it is considered as an advanced-level asana which requires some practice. The original name for the Wheel Pose in Sanskrit is Urdhva Dhanurasana, which literally means “upward-facing bow”. It is popularly called Chakrasana, “chakra” meaning wheel, and “asana” meaning pose.
The benefits of Chakrasana are multiple over muscle groups and joints, and hence it is said to have a profound effect on the entire body. Let us look at some amazing benefits of this pose.
- The Wheel Pose works the most on the back, stretching the spine and improving spine flexibility. The curving of the spine to such an extent prevents back problems, stiffness, and pain.
- The toning of neck, back, shoulder, arms and leg muscles improves overall muscular strength. Studies have shown that practising Chakrasana regularly improves strength and stamina.
- The outward extension of the Wheel Pose opens up your chest, helping you breathe deeper.
- Studies have also shown marked improvement in HbA1c levels in people with Type 2 diabetes who perform backbending poses like the Chakrasana.
- The shoulder and neck muscles are also engaged during this pose, strengthening them and preventing neck sprains and stiffness.
- The stretching of the abdomen puts enough force on your abs to reduce fat and tone them.
- The Wheel Pose is also said to stimulate the adrenal glands.
The Chakrasana steps are best done on a clean, level surface with a yoga mat. Here’s how you can get the pose right:
- To get into position, lie down on your back with bent knees and legs parted as wide as your hips.
- Lift your arms over your head, bend your elbows and place your palms flat on the floor beside your ears. Your fingers should be pointing towards your feet.
- Inhale slowly and lift your hips. Hold this position while you exhale.
- Now it’s time to lift your chest. Inhale once again as you press on your palms and lift your torso in the air. You can rest your head slightly on the floor and focus on getting your chest in position.
- Once your body is roughly in the inverted ‘U’ position, straighten your arms fully, followed by your legs.
- You’re now in the correct Chakrasana position. Remember to breathe! Hold the pose for as long as it’s comfortable.
- To come down, gently lower your head first till it reaches the floor, followed by your chest, arms and hips.
This is how one can perform the Chakrasana pose in a step-by-step manner. This is a pose that takes practice to perfect, and requires a great deal of flexibility.
Knowing how to do yoga asanas like Chakrasana isn't enough. To reap the benefits of Chakrasana, keep the following points in mind.
- Chakrasana for beginners should be performed under the supervision of a qualified yoga instructor. You can do this by enrolling in a yoga classes near you. This avoids injuries.
- Never overstretch or hold a position for any longer than your body can tolerate.
- If you have any medical conditions, never begin Chakrasana without first consulting your doctor.
Chakrasana and its benefits will only be realised if you practise consistently. Maintain your interest by performing variations and challenging asanas such as Ardha Chandrasana.
If you’re a beginner who wishes to master the Chakrasana, then get your membership to India’s largest fitness network | FITPASS. Find the best yoga classes near you. The membership also gives you access to FITCOACH, our revolutionary AI-based fitness coach. With smart instructional videos, you can perfect the Chakrasana pose and attain your fitness goals.