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Eight Point Pose (ashtanga namaskar)

Table posture that strengthens your chest, back, shoulders and arms.

Eight Point Pose (or ashtanga namaskar) provides a good stretch for the front of your neck and your upper back. This pose also strengthens your chest, upper back, shoulders and arms.
As the name of the pose implies, eight parts of your body should be touching the floor as you hold the pose: your chin, your chest, two hands, two knees and two feet. It is important that your abdomen does not touch the floor while holding the pose. With these parts of your body touching the floor, this pose provides a gentle upper back bend that is not found in many other poses.
Eight Point Pose serves as a great transition from Table Pose to Upward-Facing Dog Pose or Cobra Pose, and is commonly performed as part of Sun Salutation.
If you feel pressure on your knees in this pose, youcan place a folded towel or blanket under your knees. Use caution performing this pose if you have neck, shoulder, back, elbow or wrist problems
Begin in Table Pose.
(Make sure your hands are directly below your shoulders.)
Gently arch your back as you bend your elbows slightly.
Exhale as you lower your chest to the floor between your hands.
(You may need to adjust the position of your knees to allow your chest to rest on the floor.)
Stretch the front of your neck and place your chin on the floor.
(Your face should be looking forward.)
Move your shoulder blades down and back.
(Make sure your elbows are close to your sides.)
Curl your toes under and place the balls of your feet on the floor.
Press your tailbone toward the ceiling to lengthen your spine.
Hold the pose for 15 to 30 seconds.
(After performing Eight Point Pose, you should perform a counter pose, such as Crocodile Pose, to rest your spine.)
I have difficulty holding this pose. What can I do?
If your upper body is not strong enough to hold this pose, rest your forearms on the floor.
What can I do if my neck and throat feel strained in this pose?
You can try placing your forehead on the floor instead of placing your chin on the floor. Although this modification helps to reduce strain on your neck and throat, some beginners may find resting their forehead on the floor difficult.
How can I use this pose to build even more upper body strength?
To further strengthen your upper body in this pose, you can move back and forth between Table Pose and Eight Point Pose several times. Make sure you exhale as you move into Eight Point Pose and inhale as you move back into Table Pose.
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