February’s Featured Pose: Camatkarasana, or Wild Thing
Wild thing, you make my heart sing
You make everything groovy, wild thing
Wild thing, I think I love you
Perfect for a little valentine’s fun this month, Camatkarasana, or Wild Thing, as it is commonly referred to, is one of those poses that looks and feels as cool as it sounds. Its name is derived from the Sanskrit camatkara, meaning "miracle" or "surprise". Fully translated, Camatkarasana means "the ecstatic unfolding of the enraptured heart".
How can you not want to try it with a name like that?!
Start in adho mukha svanasana, or downward-facing dog.
Lift the left leg and left hand off the floor and let the weight of the body shift to the right hand and the outside of the right heel.
The left hand is straight pointing upward as in vasisthasana, or side plank pose.
Bring the left leg back to place the ball of the left foot on the floor.
Bend both knees to balance.
Lower the left hand and stretch it backward.
Remain in the pose for 10 breaths. Repeat the same steps in the other direction.
For more ‘feels’, place your hand over your heart!
Alternatively, you can simply cross one foot behind the other in downdog, and kind of pivot, lifting your free arm up off the floor, and viola! This way’s a little less scary!
Camatkarasana gloriously opens the heart up toward the sky, allowing us to bask in compassion, empathy, and love. It is both an arm balance and a backbend focused on the shoulders, throat, quadriceps, and core. It literally lifts up our heart, helping to combat depression and fatigue. Camatkarasana stimulates the anahata (heart chakra), which promotes love - both of self and others - peace, acceptance and self-confidence.
This chakra also helps us conquer our fear - courage, dear heart - which is a good thing if, like me, you’re a little nervous to try this pose.
Give it a try and hear your heart sing!