Archer 1 Pose, Drawing the Bow, is one of the main standing postures in Rahini Yoga®. It's performed as a pose in and of itself and as part of the "Rahini Yoga Asana Flow".
Drawing the imaginary bowstring, aiming the arrow and releasing it - letting the arrow go - imparts the Archer with opportunity to let go and trust the flow of life. Hence, this Rahini Yoga® Pose imparts vigor, vitality, self empowerment and an internal locus of control - awakening one's internal alignment with the present moment and outside influences.
Archer 1 Pose, Drawing the Bow
Archer Pose, Drawing the Bow #1: Step-By-Step Instruction
Bring the left foot forward so that the feet are approximately 2-3 feet apart. The toes of the left foot face forward while the right foot comes to a 45 degree angle (our variations allow for a 90 degree angle), with the heel back and anchored, and the toes forward. Alignment Tip: Avoid gripping the toes; instead, imagine you are gently pressing buttons on the floor with them.
The right leg remains straight and strong as the left knee bends until the thigh is almost parallel to the ground (do not let the knee go beyond the toes). Although the feet are apart, the right heel is directly aligned with the left heel (refer to the above photo and the feet placement on the alignment mat). Check your posture so you are not leaning forward. Alignment Tip #1: Apply BRACE, and lengthen the tailbone to the floor - your spine should be straight with the head over your tailbone. Alignment Tip #2: Be sure the heel of the back foot does not lift off the floor.
The left arm is extended forward, parallel to the ground. The left hand is in a fist with the thumb over the fingers and pointing upward. The right arm is bent, parallel to the floor and pulled back like pulling on a bowstring. Alignment Tip: Feel a stretch along your chest, as you pull the right arm backward.
Curl the fingers of both hands onto the palms, thumbs extended upward, and then gently pulled back. Fix your gaze and attention - Drishti, on the thumb of your left hand, avoiding neck strain as you do so. Alignment Tip #1: If possible, perform a gentle neck lock (Jalandhara Bandha). Alignment Tip #2: Optional - Tips of your fingers curl to the base of the fingers - the hands are not in a full fist because your palms are opened.
Release out of the posture, reverse sides, and repeat.
Additional Rahini Yoga® Alignment Tips
Apply the "3 Roots of Rahini Yoga®" during the pose.
Check in with your "BRACE" as you hold the pose or dynamically move - "Dynamic Archer 1 Pose, Drawing the Bow".
B.R.A.C.E. during Archer 1 Pose, Drawing the Bow
Mindfully move the bottom of the sacrum and tailbone forward. This is a small shift compared to excessively "tucking your tailbone" (we don't want to do that).
Engage your abdominals by pulling your belly button toward your spine. Keep your pelvic floor muscles energetically active.
Roll your shoulders back and down, engaging right between the shoulder blades.
R.A.P. during the Archer 1 Pose, Drawing the Bow (RAP is Technique Specific to Rahini Yoga®)
Opening of your physical "heart space".
Freedom of your diaphragm (learn to coordinate the movements of your body with the breath so the diaphragm can provide important feedback about the physical space you have created for it).
The interplay of strength and mobility of you mid-back, thoracic spine (the workhorse and backbone of your heart and lungs!)
Your breath: a physical awareness of your breath will create an energetic awareness of the vitality of your breath - "breath delight".
Inner and outer radiance - your "personal source magick".
Connectivity of your own innate personal power. Reclaim it, if needed.
Holding the Pose: Long Deep Breathing or Breath of Fire for 1-3 minutes.
Moving Dynamically ("Dynamic Archer 1 Pose, Drawing the Bow"): Ujjayi Breathing or natural breathing.
Therapeutically: Breath Practice will Vary.
In Rahini Yoga, we believe if you are not clear when setting an intention in this particular posture, it will lessen your inner power and strength. Make your intention and then aim and shoot your arrow!
Just Some Class Intentions We Use when Aiming the Arrow at the Bullseye (or, "hitting your mark"):
One's individual faults, shortcomings or negative behaviors.
Insight, understanding, wisdom or enlightenment.
A solution to a troubling dilemma or an answer to a question you might have.
Stress, tension, agitation, anxiety or depression.
Improved health, energy, vitality and longevity.
Abundance or prosperity.
Peace, joy or happiness.
Negative thoughts, selfishness, jealously, pride or attachment.
World harmony, collaboration, peace or respect.
Breaking free from addiction.
SEVA or charity.
Compassion towards animals.
Building confidence or self esteem.
Your Personal Truth.
PTA: Patience, Tolerance, Acceptance.
Motivate, Empower, Inspire: (Měi: Beauty)
Your life purpose.
Healing the Earth.
KIND KARMA® - A Global Movement of Creating Loving Kindness.
Variation of Archer 1 Pose, Drawing the Bow
Back Hand with Fingers Clenched into the Palm,
Without the Thumb Pointing Upward
Archer 1 Pose, Drawing the Bow Modification
Arms Lowered & Slightly Bent Front Leg
"The Kind Karma Chakra Ladder Of Ascension"
Together, Let's Walk in the
Rainbow Light of Compassion,
Wisdom & Loving Kindness