January 27, 2022

The Benefits of Chaturanga

Chaturanga Dandasana is an advanced form of a low plank and is regularly taught as part of a vinyasa class or within the Ashtanga Yoga Series. So, what’s it about?

Just like plank, which we may be more familiar with, this posture relies hugely on the strength of our core muscles. While you need a strong core to hold a plank, practicing it will hugely strengthen those muscles! 

If the pose feels out of your depth to begin with, know that you are not alone! It is very strong and there are variations that you can choose from to make it more accessible. To take some load off your core, lower your knees to the mat to spread the weight bearing. This is a fantastic option which doesn’t require as much core strength to begin with but has the same power to build strength in this area of the body. A strong core is key to support our health and pelvic stability, two things which are essential to maintaining a healthy and easeful posture when sitting, standing, walking and running. 

Other than the core, this posture calls for upper body strength in the arms and shoulders. The triceps and biceps need to work together to hold your body weight while the shoulders are key in stabilising this strong structure. You can strengthen the scapula stabilisers around your back and the pectoralis major in your chest. 

When working in this shape, you are resisting gravity and your whole body must work very hard to do so! It really is a team effort that doesn’t stop at the above-mentioned specifics but includes strengthening and stabilising muscles in your quads, around your spine and even into the wrists.

Heather is going to be spending 2.5-hours focusing entirely on this shape and the transition into and out of it in her upcoming workshop: Yoga Unwrapped – Chaturanga (Updog – Downdog). Open to all except for complete beginners so if you have had a few tries in class and are not crystal clear about what’s required or what could assist you on your journey, join us on Sunday 27th February at 11am. Early Bird Offer until 11th February Find out more here.