Chakrasana is also known as Urdhva Dhanurasana or Wheel Pose. The name Chakrasana comes from the Sanskrit word Chakra, “Wheel” and Asana, ”posture”. The name Urdhva Dhanurasana comes from the Sanskrit word Urdhva, “Upwards”, and Dhanu, “a bow” (for shooting arrows). It is a backbend asana. It gives great flexibility to the spine. The stretching in Chakrasana helps to tone and strengthen muscles in the back and calves and is also said to relieve tension and stress in people who sit for long times in front of a desk or computer.
1. Lie on the back with the knees bend and the heels touching the buttocks.
2. The feet and knees should be about 30 cm apart.
3. Place the palms on the floor beside the head with the fingers pointing towards the shoulders. This is the starting position.
4. Slowly raise the body and arch the back, allowing the crown of the head to support the weight of the upper body.
5. Move the hands in further towards the body for more support if necessary.
6. Straighten the arms and legs as much as possible without straining and lift the head and trunk from the floor.
7. Arch the back as high as comfortable in the final position. Straighten the knees further by moving the trunk towards the head.
8. Let the head hang between the straight arms. Lift the heels and balance on the balls of the feet and the hands for a few seconds, then lower the heels.
9. Hold the final position for as long as comfortable.
10. Slowly lower the body so the head rests on the floor and then lower the rest of the body.
11. This is one round.
Hold for as long as is comfortable. Practise up to 3 rounds.
Physical – on relaxing the spine in the final position and on the chest and abdomen.
on Manipura chakra
Chakrasana should be practised only after mastery of preliminary and intermediate backward bending asanas. It may be followed with forward bending asanas such as Halasana and Sarvangasana which apply a tight forward lock on the neck.
Chakrasana should not be practised by people with any illness, weak wrists, weak back, during pregnancy or when feeling generally tired. The cautions for inverted postures apply.
1. Chakrasana strengthen the legs.
2. It is beneficial to the nervous, respiratory, cardiovascular and glandular system. It influences all the hormonal secretions and helps relieve various gynaecological disorders.
3. Chakrasana helps you in improving your appetite naturally. When you drop the head down, make sure that you keep your jaws close. This will stretch the neckline giving good digestion. Chakrasana relieves you from constipation, digestive problem and other stomach issues giving you a naturally improved appetite.
Chakrasana should preferably be practised on a soft carpet, which will protect the head. It should not be practised on a blanket, which may slip. This is an inverted asana in which the whole body and nervous system are being placed in an abnormal position. It may be difficult to raise the body because the nervous system is not ready. Do not strain. Practise easier postures as preparation, such as Setu Bandhasana (Bridge pose). If the sense of position in space or proprioception is lost, strength is also lost. Chakrasana develops this sense of position in space.