Transformation - Focus on Standing Bow Pulling Pose

Before Yoga

April 2010 (1 Year Yoga)

February 2011 (1 year, 10 months Yoga)

  • April 2010 marked 1 year of consistent Bikram yoga practice. Now Feb. 2011 proves the practice a lovely part of daily life, and I'm almost halfway through another 60-ish day challenge endeaver ...we'll just call this one transformation and number the days when it's over or I'm over.
  • This asana is called Dandayamana-Dhanurasana - or - Standing Bow Pulling Pose. It is asana # 6/26 in the Bikram series.
  • I love time lapse photography...and comparisons. 
  • The weight is  still much too far back in the heel. 
  • The shoulder and trapezius still have a lot of releasing to do.
  • The body is still so far away from parallel to the ground, still...
  • Pointing the kicking toes ? Seriously shouldn't be that hard to still not get it. But we'll be patient.
  • Notice how much more the left shoulder has released to allow the upward kick. 
  • Notice how much more centered the kicking foot is, not all wonky toward the standing leg. 
  • Notice how much more dignified the shoulder is to the chin. 
  • Notice how the armpit to butt ratio has decreased significantly, thus increasing the backbend.
  • Notice how much more of the right side of the ribcage is visible, proving that the spine can twist and stretch AND bend all at once. 
  •  AND can you see that the percentage of torso area parallel to the ground has significantly increased, from about 26% --> 33% !!!  
  • I look at these pictures and don't even see the same person, yet I've been living in this body the entire time?
  • I get that the pose can be "40% back bending, 20% hip and shoulder release and 40% hamstring stretching" (http://www.tgoetel.com/POMstandingbow.html) but where does the balance strike between softness and strength? 
  • This pose can also be called 'dancers pose' in other hatha yoga styles. Or is it? Bikram is an archer, Shiva is the dancer. Shiva is the arbiter or simultaneous creation and destruction. There is that dynamic in the stretch of the arm reaching forward WITH the kick of the upward-extending leg. How else do these creative/destructive forces play? Do archers dance? Vinyasa/Jivamukti asana is NATARAJASANA. Bikram asana is Dandayamana Dhanurasana.


  1. Hey - catching up on blogs which I haven't read any in so long. Love your comparison pictures! AHMAZING! Congrats on another 60 dayish thing... Yes as far as finding that balance ... It's interesting that is a thought pervading my practice these days... To find the dance within the posture. There is so much emphasis on contraction but within all of this contraction there's got to be a little dance and little freedom to move and play even if it is microscopic don't ya think, otherwise it's just too static. We are always reaching further and always moving even in between postures, even in savasana - we at least breathe??? It's fun to focus on the in between stuff every now and then. Enjoy. :)

  2. ALWAYS a little freedom to move and play :)


let's talk