Series — Bikram Yoga Grosse Pointe

26 Postures

Improve Posture / December 17, 2023

Pranayama Series



  • Intercostal muscles – ribcage
  • Shoulder joints
  • Scapula
  • Ocular nerve


  • Lungs
  • Nervous System
  • Circulatory System


  • Increases lung capacity.
  • Increases lung efficiency.
  • Opens the shoulders.
  • Wakes up the body for class.

What is happening in the posture:
This energizing breathing exercise can fill your lungs with up to six times more oxygen than a regular breath. Since oxygen is a major source of energy for the body, it is not usual to feel dizzy in the standing deep breathing. Through compression of the throat, the velocity of air entering the lungs is increased to shoot air into the lower lobes of the lungs. While your arms lift to the ceiling the ribcage opens, maximizing the inhale. Because this breath is up to six times deeper than a regular breath, it increases lung capacity while giving you quick energy.

The exhale breath detoxifies the lungs deeply. When stagnant air is pushed from the bottom of the lungs it causes a release of cellular and metabolic waste from the respiratory system. As the eyes look back to see the back wall, the ocular nerve is stimulated. With the head tilted back, the upper spine opens helping to prepare the neck for backward bending. Overall, the body is energized and the circulatory and nervous systems are stimulated, invigorating the body for class.


  • Every muscle in the central part of the body
  • Abdominal muscles
  • Back
  • Spine
  • Shoulders
  • Stimulates:
  • Kidneys
  • Liver
  • Spleen
  • Lymphatic Glands
  • Respiratory System
  • Trims fat all over the body: thighs, hips, waist, buttocks, arms and abdomen.
  • Improves and strengthens every muscle in the central part of the body, especially the back and abdomen.
  • Increases flexibility of the spine and corrects bad posture.
  • Helps pigeon chest.
  • Helps release tension in the respiratory system.
  • Helps cure enlargement of the liver and the spleen.
  • Helps cure dyspepsia and constipation.
  • Helps to alleviate lower back pain, bronchial distress, scoliotic deformities, tennis elbow, frozen shoulder.
  • Realigns the spine.
  • Good for lymphoma.

What is happening in the posture:
As you maintain both sides of half-moon the sides of the spine are stretched. By maintaining the form of the pose and keeping your hips and shoulders in alignment, your body receives many benefits. First the body burns fat from the thighs, waist and buttocks while the muscles of the central body are strengthened. The organs receive a massage which helps with proper digestive function. Finally the deep stretching stimulates glands and organs to help give you quick energy while maintaining the health of many body systems.

  • Rectus Abominis
  • Obliques
  • Deltoid
  • Trapezius
  • Gluteus maximus
  • Heart
  • Thyroid/ Parathyroid

Stimulates the sympathetic nervous system and prepares the body for action.
Helps with sciatic problems.
Helps counteract damage of bad posture.
Relieves back pain, bronchial distress, scoliotic deformities, tennis elbow, frozen shoulder.
Realigns the spine.
Regulates hormone production.
Promotes proper kidney function.
Helps with digestive function, eliminating constipation and flatulence.
Helps to relieve stress and anxiety.

What is happening in the posture:
As you bend backwards you compress the posterior part of your spinal column, pushing your disks away from the spinal nerves and decompress the front of the vertebrae. This effectively counteracts the damage of hours spent forward bending.

Those concerned and intimidated by back-bending should rest assured that the controlled environment and proper progression of the Bikram Yoga series allows for back-bends to be preformed safely.


  • Biceps
  • Deltoids
  • Quadriceps
  • Calves
  • Rectus Abdominis
  • Trapezius muscles
  • Hamstrings
  • Sciatic nerve
  • Tendons and ligaments of the legs


  • Pineal and pituitary glands
  • Colon
  • Pancreas
  • Firms and trims waistline, hips, abdomen, buttocks and thighs.
  • Good for frozen shoulder.
  • Relieves lower back pain.
  • Good for abdominal obesity.
  • Greatly enhances concentration.
  • Helps with sciatic problems.
  • Improves circulation to the brain and legs

What is happening in the posture:
Unlike traditional “touch-your-toes” hamstring-stretch taught in PE class, hands-to-feet pose the whole body. This is perfect example of how a pose can both work to strengthen and stretch your body. As you pull with your arms to increase flexibility, your spine, hips and legs are stretched in what Bikram calls a “360 degree stretching angle.” Completion of this pose after half-moon and backward-bending, means that the spine has been stretched in four directions, the circulatory and nervous systems have been invigorated to prepare the body for class.


  • Triceps
  • Tones muscles of the legs
  • Ankles
  • Feet
  • Toes
  • Pelvis
  • Shins
  • Intestines
  • Helps to realign the legs to prevent lower-back pain.
  • Tones the arms, getting rid fat deposits from under the arms.
  • Helps to align the meniscus in the knee.
  • Reduces flat feet, bunions and bowed legs.
  • Helps with lumbago.
  • Relieves menstrual cramps.
  • Relieves sciatica.
  • Reduces fat under buttocks.
  • Good for arthritic conditions in knees and hips.
  • Relieves joint pain.
  • Helps to release anger and frustration.

What is happening in the posture:
This strength posture depends on the precise alignment of the feet to deliver the benefits. While in posture, the legs and feet are realigned helping to decrease back-pain. Essentially, the pose works almost like an orthotic. The muscles of the upper body are also profoundly strengthened by the back-bending and positioning of the arms helping with toning.


  • Muscles of the legs
  • Rectum and Pineal Muscles
  • 12 major joints of the body: shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips, knees and ankles.
  • Reproductive Organs
  • Lymphatic system
  • Improves and maintains joint lubrication.
  • Improves the mobility of the hip joint.
  • Improves immune system through stimulation of the lymphatic system.
  • Helps to regulate menstruation.
  • Helps improve fertility.
  • Good for cellulite.
  • Good for varicose veins.
  • Balances sexual energy.
  • Good for urinary tract infections in women.
  • Good for prostate health in men.
  • Helps with spondylisis.

What is happening in the posture:
Eagle pose opens the major joints through stretching during the pose. As the arms and legs twist, pressure is created that irrigates the circulatory system. Blood is reserved in the muscles of the thighs, calves, arms and fore-arms. When the arms and legs release this blood flow flushes the joints helping to relieve joint problems and maintaining synovial fluid. The deep compression of this posture also massages organs and glands. Eagle pose particularity stimulates the reproductive system making this a great pose for sexual vitality and fertility.


  • Quadriceps muscles
  • Latissmus Dorsi
  • Thyroid, Para-Thyroid
  • (in 4th stage)
  • Thymus (in 4th stage)
  • Digestive organs
  • Reproductive organs