Ardha Chandrasana (Half Moon Pose)
Level: Advanced Beginners
Category: Standing Pose, Forward Extension, Twist, Core Pose, Backward Extension (slight)
Ardha = half. Chandra = moon.
Strictly speaking, this should be named “Pose of the Half Moon” as there is no “Full Moon Pose”. The asana is akin to a half moon in the sense of the lateral extension of the pose being like the traversing of the half moon across the sky.
Organizing the Pose
• Come into Utthita Trikonasana (Extended Triangle Pose) from Tadasana (Mountain Pose).
• Bring the left hand to the hip.
• Bend the right leg and bring the right fingertips to the floor several inches in front of the right foot and outside the right little toe.
• Step the back leg in so that all the weight can be taken in the front leg.
• Look out to the side rather than down.
• Exhale and straighten the standing leg, reaching the back leg out and lifting it up parallel to the floor. Roll the trunk and open it up towards the ceiling. Either stay here or move on to the next stage.
• Reach the left arm up out of the opening chest. Stay here or move on to the next stage.
• Turn the head to look up at the raised hand.
• Hold the position for several breaths.
• To come out of the pose, exhale and step all the way back into Utthita Trikonasana (Extended Triangle Pose).
• Repeat the whole sequence on the other side.