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10-MIN YOGA SESSION BASED AROUND DWI PADA PITHAM (Bridge pose)    (4) 

Dwi Pada Pitham Session 4
FIRST EXERCISE OF SESSION (2 minutes)
Lie on your back with your legs in the crooked position with your knees and feet together. Put your arms in a comfortable place (probably with your hands resting on your front or your arms by your side). While exhaling, bring one knee to your chest and, while inhaling, straighten the other leg along the floor. You may find that this leg will not straighten completely along the floor - in which case just straighten this leg as far as feels comfortable. Then, exhaling, lift your head towards your lifted knee and, inhaling, lower your head back down to the ground. Exhaling, lift your straight leg back to the crooked position and, inhaling, return the other leg back to the crooked position. Repeat, starting with the other leg. Repeat 2 more times to each side.


SECOND EXERCISE OF SESSION (2 minutes)
Place your feet close to your bottom, with your knees and feet about hip-width apart. Check the position of your feet and knees. It is important for your knee's health in this pose that your feet are parallel and your knees point upwards rather than inwards or outwards - if you are not sure, it is a good idea to ask a friend or relative to check for you. Bring your attention to your neck: use your hands to gently lift and lower your head to make sure the back of your neck is elongated. Return your arms to a comfortable place close to your sides and pull your shoulders down away from your ears; then relax. Inhaling, imagine an elongation occurring in your spine. As you exhale, squeeze your abdomen inwards towards your spine so that your lower back elongates along the floor and your pelvis tilts slightly off the floor. Hold your breath out and maintain your abdominal contraction as you push /sink your feet into the floor to lift your hips off the floor. As you inhale, maintain most of the abdominal tone and direct the in-breath into the chest area so that it expands. Exhale while slowly lowering your back down vertebra by vertebra (from the neck downwards), until your bottom is resting on the floor again. Repeat 3 to 8 times.

THIRD EXERCISE OF SESSION (2 minutes)
Lie on your back with your legs in a crooked position, your arms by your sides. Bring your knees to your chest and place your hands on your knees. Inhaling, move your arms so that your elbows rest on the floor in line with your shoulders, with the elbows bent at right angles so that your hands rest on the floor, fingers pointing away from your feet. Exhaling, straighten both legs up towards the ceiling - note that is not essential your legs are completely straight but it is important that your heels remain over your hips (or slightly closer to your head than this). Inhaling, lift your arms to point up at the ceiling so that all parts of your arms (upper arms, forearm, and hands/fingers) are vertical and your arms are straight (but your shoulders remain resting on the floor). Exhaling, bend your knees back to your chest and at the same time bend and lower your arms to place your hands on your knees. Repeat this sequence 3 to 8 times.

FOURTH EXERCISE OF SESSION (4 minutes)
Lie down in a comfortable position and practise a relaxation method of your choice.
You could try imagining any areas of discomfort or tension as being filled with ice (i.e. imagine discomfort or tension as ice). Then imagine warm healing sunlight shining on you, warming and healing and relaxing every bit of you. Watch/feel/imagine the warmth of the healing sunlight melt the ice and the water drain away out of the pores of your skin.
Remember not to rush sitting up (and then standing) after practising relaxation as it causes one's blood pressure to fall, which can cause dizziness if one moves too quickly.