Last updated: December 21, 2023

What Does Bhuja Mean?

Bhuja is a Sanskrit term meaning “arm” or “shoulder.” In Buddhism and Hinduism, bhuja is part of the name that refers to a deity with many arms.

In yoga, bhuja poses involve balancing with or stretching the arms or shoulders. The most notable among these poses is bhujapidasana (shoulder-pressing pose), which is part of the primary series of Ashtanga yoga and one of the first arm-balancing postures in the series.


Yogapedia Explains Bhuja

Among the bhuja poses in yoga, some are:

  • Bhujapidasana – Also known as shoulder-pressing pose, this posture requires balance, flexibility and strength in the upper body to balance on the palms with the legs wrapped around the shoulders or upper arms. As well as a range of physical benefits, it is believed to relieve mental and emotional stress.
  • Eka Hasta Bhujasana – Also known as elephant’s trunk pose, this is a preparatory posture for bhujapidasana, the difference being that just one leg wraps around the shoulder while the other leg extends straight forward. The pose is designed to enhance power and grace.
  • Parsva Bhuja Dandasana – Also known as dragonfly or grasshopper pose, this is an advanced arm-balancing pose off to one side with one foot wrapped around the neck or resting against the upper arm and the other leg extended to the side. It targets the muladhara, or root chakra, and is believed to help combat fears such as falling, failing or lack of confidence.

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