Thunder Pose – Simple but surprisingly effective

Thunder pose is one of the basic yoga poses commonly used for meditation purposes. Although it looks simple, in reality, this pose can bring the body a lot of great benefits.

Thunder Pose is a kneeling pose called Vajrasana in Sanskrit, where Vajra means diamond or lightning, and asana of course means pose. Although the name sounds “thunder” but surely any of us, even if we have never practiced yoga, are certainly not too unfamiliar with this pose. Let’s explore this special pose with through the sharing below.

Benefits of Thunder Pose

Vajrasana is a stable, firm sitting posture that is hard to shake. This is a pose commonly used for meditation. However, many yogis share that sitting in this pose is quite difficult because they have to overcome pain in their legs and instability in their minds to master the pose and enter a meditative state. However, even so, this pose can still bring the body a lot of great benefits both in terms of physical and mental health:

Good for the digestive system in many ways

When performing the thunderbolt pose, blood flow to the legs and thighs is impeded, thereby increasing blood flow to the stomach, which improves bowel movements and relieves constipation. Not only that, this pose also helps you get rid of bloating, indigestion, heartburn. In particular, it will help the body absorb nutrients better.

Lower back pain

Vajrasana helps strengthen the lower back muscles, helping to relieve pain and discomfort. In addition, this pose also helps in the treatment of sciatica.

Pain relief

Vajrasana can help increase flexibility in the thighs and feet, as well as the muscles around the hips, knees, and ankles. In addition, the thunder pose also helps relieve heel pain caused by bone spurs and pain from gout.

Strengthen pelvic floor muscles

Practicing Vajrasana can increase blood circulation to the pelvis and strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. Therefore, this position is very useful for women with urinary incontinence. Besides, the thunder pose also has the effect of soothing labor pain and menstrual pain.

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Calm your mind

Practicing Vajrasana can help reduce stress, improve concentration, and help you sleep better and deeper. It also prevents depression and anxiety.

Treatment of high blood pressure

Thunder pose can help reduce stress, regulate blood pressure and protect you from cardiovascular risks.

Weight loss

Thunder pose helps to increase digestion and reduce belly fat. Therefore, many studies have proven this pose can be effective in reducing BMI (body mass index) and obesity.

How to do the lightning move

Most yoga poses are recommended to be done on an empty stomach, however the thunderbolt pose is an exception. You can do this pose after a meal, even doing it at this time is many times more effective because it promotes the digestion process taking place inside the body. To do the thunder pose, do:

1. Kneel on a yoga mat. Sit on your knees with your feet relaxed. You need to pay attention to kneel so that the soles of your feet do not touch the ground.

2. Cross your big toes to create a fulcrum to help you have a comfortable sitting position.

3. Place your hands above your knees and relax. Arms should be relaxed instead of stretched. You can turn your palm upside down or down depending on how you feel. Or if you like, you can also fold your hands in front of your chest in a prayer position.

4. Straighten the spine so that the back is perpendicular to the floor, pull the shoulders back and squeeze the body. Then, exhale and draw your belly in.

5. Keep your head straight, eyes forward

6. Focus on the breath. Breathe deeply and slowly. As you inhale and exhale, your ribcage opens and falls. Continue to keep your back straight, not leaning forward.

7. Close your eyes and focus on your inner self.

8. Try to stay in this pose for 1-2 minutes. If meditating, continue for 5-10 minutes or longer as needed.

thunder movement

Some common mistakes

Thunder pose is quite simple, you can master it from the first practice and this can motivate you to try other poses. However, since this kneeling pose is often used in Hatha Yoga sequences, make sure you don’t make the following mistakes:

Curved back

While arching your back can be comfortable, it can cause neck and back pain in the long run. Therefore, you need to keep your back straight throughout the exercise to get the best results.

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Keep your head down

This is a fairly common mistake that puts a lot of pressure on the neck. Instead of bowing, focus on looking straight ahead to avoid straining your neck.

Stretching the body too much

When performing, you need to squeeze some parts of the body such as the abdomen, shoulders and back, but do not overextend the body. If you feel uncomfortable, end the pose and relax your body.

Finish the pose too soon

Some yoga poses only need to be maintained for a few seconds or minutes to be effective, but the thunder pose needs to be held for longer. Try to hold the pose for at least 30 seconds. If meditating, hold for at least 5 minutes.

Some notes when practicing thunder pose

Although the thunderbolt pose is extremely safe, when practicing, you also need to keep a few things in mind:

  • Avoid this pose if you have knee problems or have had recent knee surgery.
  • Pregnant women should keep their knees slightly apart when to avoid putting pressure on the abdomen.
  • If you have an ulcer, hernia or any other problem related to the large or small intestine, you should practice this pose under the guidance of a yoga teacher.

Some notes when practicing thunder pose

Another variation of the thunder pose is to bring your hands behind your back and clasp your hands together like in prayer

Useful tips to practice thunder pose for you

If you’re new, chances are your feet will be sore. If this happens, get out of position and straighten your legs forward. Then, gently massage your ankles, knees, and calf muscles. With regular practice, over time, you will be able to comfortably sit in this pose for up to 30 minutes

Also, for beginners, it’s best to get used to it slowly and gradually to strengthen the muscles in the lower back before trying to go deeper into the pose or increase the duration of the workout.

Some advanced variations of the thunder pose

If you are familiar with the thunderbolt move, you can do a more advanced variation. Specifically, when sitting in Vajrasana, you will have to bend back and place both forearms and elbows on the floor. Then, arch your back and neck until your head touches and rests on the floor or is supported by a thin pillow.

This pose strengthens the muscles in the neck, back, and chest, and it also helps to open up the ribcage and reduce lung problems. However, it is important to master Vajrasana before you try this pose. And it’s best to practice this variation under the guidance of a yoga instructor.

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Alternatively, you can also try another variation, which is to bring your hands behind your back and clasp your hands together like in prayer. When performing this advanced pose, rotate your shoulders and elbows slowly to avoid injury.

Reference source

How To Do The Vajrasana And What Are Its Benefits Accessed: 13/10/2020

8 Health Benefits of Vajrasana! Accessed date: 10/13/2020

How to do Thunderbolt Pose (Vajrasana) in Yoga Accessed: 13/10/2020

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