There are numerous sayings related to bridges. These refer to the nature of bridges as instruments for crossing over from one space to another, with the cross-over usually being done to avoid a break that would deter movement (as in a body of water separating two areas of land).
In Hatha Yoga, the Bridge Pose, or Setu Bandha Sarvangasana in Sanskrit ( setu = bridge, banda = lock, asana = pose) means to put your body, mind, and spirit in a position of crossing over, of moving beyond self-imposed boundaries.
Qualities of the Bridge Pose
The Bridge Pose uses the knees and the legs to raise and support the lower torso and the hips. While in this position of semi-elevation, the head and upper body are flat down on the floor. In this sense, the arc of a bridge is simulated. Temporarily modifying the natural flow of blood in this manner jump-starts the energy of the yogi, making the mind more receptive and the body more open to withstanding stress.
Demonstration of the Bridge Pose
Benefits of the Bridge Pose
- Mental – this pose is great for the relief of mild depression, fatigue, anxiety, and stress. It relaxes the thought processes sufficiently, to enable the mind to consider various options that could serve as solutions to any problem or issue that you might be worrying over.
- Physical – this pose is ideal for stimulating the thyroid, lungs, and abdominal organs, aiding in attaining better digestion and respiration. Menstrual issues and symptoms of menopause are also relieved through regular practice of this pose. The spine, the neck, and the chest are stretched, as well as the legs and the hips, which are therapeutic to have better posture and breathing. The pose is also good for relieving insomnia.
- Spiritual – through the Bridge Pose’s reduction of fatigue and anxiety, you will be more able to create opportunities for internal self-improvement, going over and beyond what you have previously perceived (and possibly accepted) as your limitations.
The Bridge Pose can possibly cause a neck injury if not done well. Refer to the accompanying demonstration videos to get a fuller grasp of how to execute this Hatha Yoga pose. Be clear on your limitations and never over-extend yourself as small steps forward, favor big steps backwards.
Now that you have a grip on how the Bridge Pose is done, be sure to subscribe to the MyFitnessNut.com Newsletter and see how 69 other Hath Yoga poses are done. In the next article of this online Hatha Yoga guide we’ll discover the “Happy Baby Pose” along with the treasures that come with experiencing the simple joys of life.