Does Syncing Yoga With The Phases Of The Moon Enhance Its Benefits? Find Out!

The Earth and its little satellite share a bond that affects life, the oceans, the climate, and the Yoga practices on this planet.
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The Universe is an intriguing place. The moon that sits thousands of miles away from Earth, pulls and pushes its strings to control the tidal waves and the planet’s climate. It even goes ahead to affect our mood, behaviour, and fluids in the body. We know this sounds hard to believe at first, but research proves that syncing Yoga with the phases of the moon, has tremendous benefits.

Read on to explore how our mind, body, and the Moon are all connected.

Humans, the Moon, and history

For centuries now, be it medicine or folklore, the Moon’s gradation is known to have both negative and positive effects on us. A Mesopotamian tablet from 172 BCE describes ways to ward off the evil of a lunar eclipse. In ancient Greece and Rome, girls wore crescent-shaped amulets to protect themselves from evil as well as to improve fertility.

By the 16th Century, the Moon’s position was considered an essential part of medicine, as the waxing phases were thought to improve health and the Full Moon was believed to severe the condition.

Even in our Indian culture, it is believed that eating during a lunar eclipse is harmful to health, as the strong ultraviolet rays turn cooked food into poison.

Yoga, the Moon, and the connection

Just like the Earth’s tidal waves are dictated by the Moon, our body which is also 60 percent water, exhibits changes in energy levels, emotions, and health. As says Yoga expert Pearl Appleby, “Becoming more in tune with the different phases of the moon can really help you understand your emotions and expand your yogi’s practice.”

In addition, Hatha yoga, which is one of the most common kinds, splits up into “sun” (ha) and “moon” (tha) in Sanskrit. This points out the probability that it can balance the polar energies inside of us.

A 2013 study of male university students found that their blood pressure and heart rate were lower during full and new moons. A 2021 study found a link between the Moon and our sleep pattern.

Although the exact correlation between the Moon and human physiology is mixed, linking your Yoga practice with the lunar phases is still meaningful and a good way to honour the moon.

Syncing the yoga practice, The Moon and the benefits

Louisa Craig, a yoga teacher with Yoga Alliance Professionals says, “Yoga is about self-realisation, and when we connect to the lunar cycles we tune into our true nature.”

You can practice the following asanas on their corresponding lunar phase.

New Moon

The sky turns into a black canvas, which is indicative of change and renewal. While practicing, keep your pace slow and meditative and visualise new beginnings.

Asanas to try
• Sirsasana (headstand)
• Tadasana (mountain pose)
• Viparita Karani (legs up the wall pose)
• Tree pose

Waxing Crescent Moon

This phase signifies building new habits and being open to new possibilities. While practicing, focus on strength building, include a more energetic flow, and end with pranayama to build heat.

Asanas to try
• Dandayamana Janushirasana (standing head-to-knee pose)
• Utkatasana (chair pose)
• Virabhadrasana

First Quarter Moon

One week after the new moon and one week before the full moon is the first quarter moon or the half-moon, where the energy levels are on a steady rise. While practicing, do more fiery flows to build a lot of heat in the body, start turning your goals into reality, and do backbends to encourage new growth.

Asanas to try
• Navasana (boat pose)
• Ardha Chandrasana (half moon pose)
• Bhujangasana (cobra pose)

Waxing Gibbous Moon

Right before the full moon, this is the perfect time to push the mind and body to their maximum potential. While practicing, incorporate dynamic, aerobic, and dance-like movements in your flow.

Asanas to try
• Suryanamaskar (sun salutations)
• Chandranamaskar (moon salutations)
• Ustrasana (camel pose)
• Dandayamana Dhanurasana (standing bow)
• Viprita Virabhadrasana (reverse warrior)

Full Moon

The Full Moon represents the epitome of energy and makes it an ideal time to reflect our goals and intentions in life. While practicing, focus on meditation and practice restorative yoga.

Asanas to try
• Baddha Konasana (bound angle pose)
• Balasana (child’s pose)
• Savasana (corpse pose)
• Yoga nindra

Waning Gibbous Moon

This phase brings with it a restless and somewhat uneasy feeling. So, it’s best to slow down and become introspective to feel calm. While practicing, embrace lunar energy by incorporating slow movements, and focusing on your inner self.

Asanas to try
• Camatkarasana (wild thing)
• Dhanurasana (bow pose)
• Eka Pada Rajakapotasana (king pigeon pose)

Last Quarter Moon

It’s time to clean the slate, welcome renewed energy and intentions with the next full moon. While practicing, try slow and mindful flows that will allow you to reflect on your energy.

Asanas to try
• Chakravakasana (cat-cow pose)
• Upavistha Konasana (full split pose)
• Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana (revolved half moon pose)

Waning Crescent Moon

The final stage before the New Moon is a great time to digest and understand the wisdom gained through the last cycle. This phase is also known as the ‘dark’ or ‘balsamic’ phase, which should be a time of contemplation. While practicing, use props to support your body, and practice a restorative flow.

Asanas to try
• Supta Matsyendrasana (reclined twist)
• Savasana (corpse pose)
• Supta Kapotasana (reclined pigeon)

Yoga, itself a healthy habit can be taken a notch higher when clubbed with the phases of the moon, why not give it a try to experience a difference?

Read more: 5 Lessons That We Love From Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love

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