Keep your kidneys healthy with this yoga sequence from David Lurey.
About the sequence
The amazing kidneys – the organs that balance the body’s fluids – are located underneath the back ribs between the 9th thoracic and the 2nd lumbar vertebrae. They are responsible for purifying the blood as well as producing urine. Because of their connection to the fluids, they rule the general health of the bones, joints and reproductive organs.
From a Chinese medicinal perspective, balanced kidney energy relates to wisdom and trust in yourself; an ability to deal with stress as well the ability to let things go. Imbalanced kidney energy can bring about a sense of fear and self-doubt, attachment to people and things and often a lack of focus.
There are many ways to approach the more energetic aspects of the kidneys through Yin Yoga, acupuncture, diet and lifestyle. This active sequence is designed to focus on the physiological aspects of the kidneys, through compression, to keep them healthy and functioning well.
You’ll need a few props for this sequence – a bolster, blanket, a belt and a couple of blocks.
1. Baddha Konasana
Engage the back body to compress the kidneys.
Do the pose with both sitting bones on the floor. Then twist with the intention to compress the kidneys.
3. Navasana (with belt)
Place the belt at the line of the kidneys on your back.
4. Janu Sirsasana with Maha Mudra
Inhale and lift the chest with the hands on (or near) the feet. Exhale, engage Mula Bandha and press your hands down towards the floor. Inhale, keep the actions and lower the chin to the chest to hold the breath IN with 3 bandhas active. Release before any anxiety of holding the breath arises.
5. Viparita Karani (with bolster)
Relax on a bolster with gentle compression of your body weight on the kidneys.
6. Supta Baddha Konasana (with bolster and blocks)
Relax with gentle compression of body weight on the kidneys. Keep the knees supported to stay relaxed.
7. Parivritta Pawanmuktasana
Roll from side to side with the knees tucked in towards the chest for a massaging effect on the kidneys (exhale – take the legs down / inhale – bring them up).
8. Jatara Parivartanasana
Keep the torso, legs and feet at 90 degrees to each other the whole time, twisting from side to side (exhale – take the legs down / inhale – bring them up).
Place a blanket on the kidneys to keep them warm.