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  • Dance of Shiva
    Lesson 1, Basic Positions

    Lesson 2, F-F

    Pattern Storage and Network Building

    Because the positions of the dance of shiva are clearly defined, it's easy for your brain (and your consciousness) to hold on to these patterns and store them. What can make the positions even more memorably is feeling your shoulders, elbows and hands while you do them.

    In most dance of shiva positions you can focus on reaching your shoulder blades away from your spine, reaching your elbows away from your shoulders (so that you upper arms feel "long") and making your fingers feel long also.

    So that your arms have a solid base, you can also focus on making your neck long (pull your head back and up) and expand your ribcage, (front, sides and back.)

    You can work towards making your whole body feel long or open while doing shivanata positions and movements. But prior to that you can focus on learning the positions.

    The Basic Shivanata Starting Position

    The starting posture for learning the first four dance of shiva positions is

    • Feet shoulder width apart, parallel, knees slightly bent.
    • Pull the head back and up to lengthen your neck and at the same time allow your chest to lift.
    • Let your arms hang down by your side.

    the dance of shivathe dance of shivathe dance of shiva

    The first part of moving into nearly all positions is spreading the shoulder blades. From there, allow the movement to ripple out through the elbows and then the hands.

    Since positions are the same for both hands, also focus on making both sides feel the same.

    Use one arm, say your right, as the reference position and adjust your left arm to match your right. (or vice versa.)

    Work Towards Symmetry

    When adjusting your body, making it symetrical, you may find it easier if you focus on one element at a time. So for example, start by making your shoulders feel the same. Then adjust your elbows, then your arms.

    This can be an iterative process. Work towards symmetry gradually. Do the best that you can.

    Practicing the Positions

    For all positions, start in neutral, arms by your sides.

    • Say the name of the position, move your arms into the position.
    • Feel your shoulder blades, elbows, hands and wrists. (Feel your ribcage and neck first).
    • Make both sides as close to symetrical as possible. Return to neutral.

    Repeat that position 5 times and then move on to the next position.

    • Rest when you need to.

    The First Set of Four Dance of Shiva Positions

    In the first four positions both hands are horizontal

    Hands are horizontal with fingers pointing either outwards or inwards.

    Position 1-1

    For position 1-1 the elbows are bent with hands at about eye height.

    Make your elbows feel strong and make your fingers feel long.

    dance of shiva position 1-1 rear

    Position 2-2

    Position 2-2 can feel like you are elbowing someone to the side of you. As with Dance of Shiva positin 1-1, make your elbows feeel strong. Squeeze them at the front and back.

    dance of shiva position 2-2 rear

    Position 3-3

    In position 3-3 the elbows are slightly bent. Roll the top of your shoulders fowards and roll your forearms inwards at the elbow joint. Flatten your palms and straighten your fingers as much as possible.

    dance of shiva position 3-3 rear

    Position 4-4

    Position 4-4 can also feel like you are elbowing someone to the side of you. Hands at forehead height, you may find it feels more comfortably to lift your shoulders slightly. Make your neck feel long and your fingers long also.

    dance of shiva position 4-4 rear

    Barefoot Yoga

    The Second Set of Four Dance of Shiva Positions

    In the next four dance of shiva positions both palms face vertical outwards. Finger point either forwards or backwards.

    Position a-a

    In position a-a thrust your arms straight ahead. Hands are at shoulder height and can be shoulder width or closer. For ease of viewing my hands are shoulder width in the picture. You may want o vary this depending on feel.

    Although you can't see it, the elbows point out in this position. (Compare with position c-c below.)

    dance of shiva position a-a rear

    Position B-B

    In position b-b the elbows point forwards as much as possible. The fingers point back towards the sternum. It can help if you move your shoulders forwards in this position.

    dance of shiva position b-b rear

    Position C-C

    In dance of shiva position c-c the hands again are forwards but the elbows point downwards, and even slightly inwards. To make this position easier to differentiate from position a-a I've positioned my arms slightly lower. Note that it can be quite challenging to get the palms to face outwards in this position. Do the best that you can.

    dance of shiva position c-c rear

    Position D-D

    In position d-d, the arms are back.

    Try lifting your shoulders a little and then focus on moving them back. Move your shoulder blades towards each other.

    dance of shiva position d-d rear

    Lesson 2, F-F

    Return to Home Page

    Return to Dance of Shiva

    Coordination, Body Awareness, Alignment

    Coordination and Consciousness

    Basic Posture Fixes

    Breath and Subtle Muscle Control

    Learn to Feel and Control Your Anatomy

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