Lord of the Dance Pose (Natarajasana) requires foundation, stability, concentration, flexibility, and balanced action -- everything you need as you set out to achieve your goals for the New Year. Use a strap to achieve greater access in the pose, and to keep your hips squared toward the front of the mat instead of splayed wide open.
Stand in Mountain Pose (Tadasana). Put your left hand on your left hip and shift your weight into your left leg, holding a strap in your right hand. Bend your right leg, lift the foot behind you, and loop the strap around the top of your right foot, pulling both ends over your shoulder. Set your drishti to one point out in front of you. Then lift both elbows to the sky, biceps by the ears, and catch the strap ends in both hands at the base of the skull, keeping upper arm bones back. Square hips to the front of the mat and begin to kick firmly into the strap, moving into a backbend. If the flexibility is there, you can walk your hands up the strap, making it shorter. Keep the standing leg firm and engaged while you kick the back foot up toward the ceiling. Once in the pose, hold for 5 deep breaths. Change sides.
Bethany Lyons is a powerful leader, creator, community builder and cofounder of Lyons Den Power Yoga, Manhattan's only Baptiste-style yoga studio. Bethany is a classically trained ballet dancer, Certified Baptiste Yoga Teacher and Master Instructor at SoulCycle. In cofounding Lyons Den Power Yoga, Bethany seeks to showcase the endless possibilities all around us and to show up in a big way for her students and in her life.
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