In Sanskrit “Kapala” means skull; “bhati” means shining. Kapalabhati is considered to be so cleansing to the entire system that, when practiced on a regular basis, s, the skull (and the face) shine with good health and inner radiance. Although a breathing exercise Kapalabhati is considered to be one of the “Shat Kriyas” (6 cleansing exercises; see The Complete Book of Yoga for further information).
How to do Mayoorasana
Coming into the position
- Sit up on your heels with knees wide apart. Bring the hands and forearms together, palms forward.
- Place the hands flat on the floor with fingers pointing in towards the body. Elbows are bent and pressing into the midriff area.
- Drop the head to the floor.
- Stretch one leg straight back and bring the other leg out beside it. The weight is now on the hands, toes and forehead.
- Raise the head up and shift the weight forward. As the weight shifts the feet will come off the ground.
Holding the position
The body is balanced on the hands is parallel to the floor. Hold the position for ten seconds, increasing the time to 1 minute. Repeat 2-3 times.
Benefits of Mayoorasana
“The peacock posture destroys the effects of unwholesome food; it produces heat in the stomach; it destroys the effects of deadly poisons; it easily cures diseases, like Gulma and fever; such is this useful posture ”
– Gerunda Samhita
- Because of the pressure on the abdomen, the blood is directed to the digestive organs. As the intra-abdominal pressure is increased, the abdominal viscera are toned.
- Liver, pancreas, stomach, and spleen are invigorated. The nerves and muscles connected with kidneys and intestines are revitalized.
- Sluggishness of the liver hepatic torpidity disappears.
- The peacock is an invaluable aid against problems of constipation, indigestion, diabetes and piles.
- It helps to remove all diseases caused by excess of wind, bile or phlegm.
- When the peacock is practised, the body easily digests food taken immoderately and promiscuously (It counteracts the effects of overeating and eating of rich foods).
- The arm muscles are strengthened.
Mental/ Psychic Benefits
- Increases concentration and determination.
- Promotes physical and mental balance.
- Removes lethargy.
- Kundalini Shakti, is awakened.