Definition - What does Dancer's Pose mean?
Dancer's pose is a standing balance yoga pose that requires and builds strength, flexibility, balance and coordination. It stretches and strengthens the legs as well as opens the shoulders and chest.
Starting in mountain pose, one leg is bent, heel brought back to the same buttock, and knees aligned. The same hand clasps the foot or ankle of the bent leg. With an inhale, the opposite arm is extended upward. To move forward, the extended arm and the torso lenghten, while the lifted leg moves back and up. Eventually, the thigh of the lifted leg should become parallel to the mat and the torso pointing up and forward.
Dancer's pose may also be referred to by its Sanskrit name, natarajasana.
Yogapedia explains Dancer's Pose
Some of the benefits of dancer's pose include:
- Improves concentration
- Opens the chest and lungs
- Opens and stretches the front of the body, while strengthening the back muscles
There are some variations available for this pose. If it is not possible to clasp the foot behind the back, there is an option to loop a strap or a belt around the foot and hold on to it. For a deeper stretch, it is possible to hold the foot or ankle with the opposite hand, or clasp it with both hands.
A good tip for keeping one's balance in this pose is to keep the gaze fixed on one spot in front. It is also important not to hold the breath, but to breathe deeply through the nose.