Balancing Bear Pose

Definition - What does Balancing Bear Pose mean?

Balancing bear pose is a seated yoga posture that enhances flexibility and balance.

In this pose, the yogi begins seated in butterfly pose. The big toes are grasped with the index and middle fingers. The weight shifts to the sit bones as the yogi leans back, then the legs straighten overhead to form a wide angle “V” shape. The pose is held for six to eight breaths.

Balancing bear pose may also be referred to by its Sanskrit name, merudandasana.

Yogapedia explains Balancing Bear Pose

In addition to activating the spleen/sacral chakra - which is the center of creative energy, pleasure and joy - balancing bear pose is believed to offer the following benefits:

  • Improves focus and concentration
  • Opens the hips and back of the legs
  • Stimulates the abdominal organs, improving digestion
  • Strengthens the core muscles and back
  • Stretches the spine

For a modification, beginners or yogis with limited flexibility, may choose to keep the knees bent slightly and/or sit on a folded blanket. For an easier variation of the pose, known as half bear, lift just one leg at a time.

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