As you probably know, the moon and its cycles influence our mind and body, from the mood we are in to our quality of sleep, but did you know it can also impact your yoga practise? Here is our guide to harnessing the energy of the moon, syncing your practise with this inspiring lunar cycle and using the power of the full moon to your advantage. Let’s get 2022 off to a positive start!
Should I Practise Yoga During a Full Moon?
A full moon is one of the most exciting lunar cycles because it represents a boost in energy and is a moment for celebration. In Ashtanga practice, yogis abstain from doing yoga on full moon days because this is one of the most advanced forms of yoga and therefore the risk of injury is greater and so they use full moon days as rest days. All other types of yoga are encouraged during this moon phase.
What Does the Full Moon Mean for Yogis?
A full moon gives yogis the opportunity to refresh, rejuvenate and release any built up tension or stress. Practising yoga during a full moon and aligning your energy with this lunar phase will allow you to feel grounded and fulfilled. The evening is the best time to practise and this will also allow you to reap the benefits as you wind down before bed.
A Step by Step Moon Salutation (Chandra Namaskar)
Moon salutations are the perfect sequences to try to harness the healing powers of the moon. Unlike sun salutations that are energising and stimulating, moon salutations are calming and soothing.
Side Bend Pose
Standing sideways on your yoga mat, begin in Mountain pose with your palms together at heart height. Lift your palms to the sky before bending over to the left side upon exhalation. Bring your palms back to the centre as you inhale before stretching over to your right side. This intense side stretch movement mirrors the image of a half moon.
Goddess Squat Pose
From this side bend move gently into the Goddess Squat Pose. Raise your left foot up and out to the side and bring your foot down as you move your bottom back and your knees out over your toes to achieve a squat position.
From here, transition from your squat position into Triangle pose via Star pose. With your feet hip width apart, raise your arms so that you create the shape of a star with your head being the fifth point then move into triangle pose with your left arm reaching down to your calf and raise your right arm up to the sky.
Fold your upper body over your right leg and lower both hands to the floor. Take a few slow breaths in this position.
Bend the forward knee into a low lunge and let your back knee touch the floor. Your hands should come to rest on either side of the front foot.
Side Lunge into Squat
Turn your body towards the centre and lift into a wide leg squat. Hold this position as you inhale.
You have completed half of your moon salutation, you now finish by doing each of the movements you have just completed in reverse. Work your way back from the low lunge into Pyramid pose then work your way through Triangle pose, Goddess Pose, Half Moon pose finishing in Mountain pose.
This series of bends and lunges are all low impact and designed to calm your central nervous system and prepare your body for rest.
Make a note of the full moon dates in 2022 listed here and pledge to try a moon salutation each month.