Garuda is known as the king of the birds or vehicle of Lord Vishnu. This asana can be performed as follows;
- Bend your knees slightly, lift your left foot up and, balancing on your right foot, cross your left thigh over the right. Point your left toes toward the floor, pressing the foot back, and then hook the top of the foot behind to the lower right calf. Now balance on the right foot.
- Stretch your arms out straight forwards, parallel to the floor, and spread your scapulas wide across the back of your torso. Cross the arms in front of your torso so that the right arm is above the left, and then bend your elbows. Place the right elbow in twining the left, and raise the forearms perpendicular to the floor. The backs of your hands should be facing each other.
- Press the right hand to the right and the left hand to the left, so that the palms are now facing each other. The thumb of the right hand should pass in front of the little finger of the left. Now press the palms together (as much as is possible for you), lift your elbows up, and stretch the fingers toward the ceiling.
- Maintain this posture for about 15 to 30 seconds, then unwind the legs and arms and stand in Tadasana again. Repeat for the same length of time with the arms and legs reversed.
The benefits of this asana are:
- This asana helps in the strengthening of the thighs, the ankles and the calves.
- Also helps in the stretching of the hips, calves and ankles.
- It also stretches the shoulders, arms and the upper back.
- Helps in developing of focus and concentration.
- Also helps in the improvement of balance and coordination.
- Improves the balance.
- Also helps in the prevention of cramps in calf muscles.
- Provides you relief from tiredness caused by prolonged walking.
- Very beneficial in varicose vein.
Precautionary measures that are to be followed while performing this asana are:
- Should be avoided by individuals suffering from knee injuries.
- Should not be practiced in late pregnancy and obesity.
- In cases of low blood pressure.