This month’s featured pose is Parivrtta Galavasana or Revolved Flying Crow Pose. The name of the pose is derived from the following terms:
parivrtta – revolved / twisted
Galava – a Hindu sage, the son of Viswamitrasana
asana – pose
The Harivamsa Purana is an important Sanskrit literature piece and is considered as a supplement to the Mahabharata. In the Harivamsa, the story of Galava was recounted as follows: –
Galava was son of Viswamitra, and that sage in a time of great distress tied a cord around his son’s waist and offered him for sale. Prince Sayavrata gave him liberty and restored him to his father. From his having been bound with a cord (gala), he was called Galava.
Parivrtta Galavasana is an intermediate asana practice for those who would like to add a new layer to the physical practice of yoga. As this a twisting pose, the 3rd Chakra or Manipuraha Chakra is stimulated and heat is created in the body. It is where the importance of the breath comes in, to balance the energies in the body and keep the mind stable.
Manipuraha Chakra / Solar Plexus
Degree of Difficulty
(100 being most difficult)
The below warm-up focuses on preparing the wrist, and the rotational movement of the torso for twisting.
1. Come to the hands and knees in tabletop position with the back neutral.
2. Rotate the wrists outwards so that the fingers are pointing towards the knees.
3. Inhale and on exhale, pull the hips back and feel the stretch on the wrists.
4. Repeat several times by moving in and out of the pose with mindful inhalations and exhalations.
Benefit: Properly extends the muscles of the hands and creates space in the wrist area.
1. Kneel on the floor with the left knee down and right foot flat on the floor. Raise the left arm.
2. Inhale and on exhale, twist to the left side and bring the left elbow pressing against the right thigh.
3. Press the hands in prayer pose and broaden the shoulders to keep the chest open.
4. Hold for a few gentle breaths and repeat on the opposite side.
Seated Spinal Twist
1. Sit in a cross-legged position (for those with difficulty sitting comfortably, sit on a block or opt to sit on the heels in Vajrasana/Diamond pose).
2. Interlock the fingers and turn the palms out.
3. Stretch the arms forward then extend the arms above the head, aiming to bring the arms in line with the ears.
4. Inhale and on exhale, twist the torso and turn the head to the right. Keep the arms extending upwards.
5. Turn back to the centre and repeat on the other side.
As the body becomes stable, lift the back foot off the floor. Keep the gaze to the floor.
TIP! As you progress in the pose, look forward instead of looking down.
To read the full article please download our Asana Journal App or purchase Issue 170 February 2017.