Revolved Half Moon (Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana)

Revolved Half Moon Pose (Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana) Steps and Benefits - Fitzabout
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Updated: April 4, 2023

The Revolved Half Moon Pose, also known as Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana, is an intermediate level standing and balancing yoga pose, which requires balance, focus, strength and flexibility.

Energy balance is required in the legs and arms, upper body and lower back to maintain posture. The revolving half-moon has been developed as one of the cool, rejuvenating qualities of the moon.

The position of the Moon can affect a person’s position. For example on a full moon days, you can feel headstrong and overly ambitious. On Moon day you may feel unwell. These extremes balance as the moon makes its way from new to full. The Revolved Half Moon (Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana) asks practitioners to find balance by using the arms, legs, upper body, and lower body equally. When found, this physical resemblance brings mental balance, allowing the “sweet spot” to be discovered in all aspects of life.

Meaning

The Revolved Half Moon Pose comes from the Sanskrit name of four words “Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana”.

  • Parivrtta + Ardha + Chandra + Asana:
    1. Parivrtta” = “revolved”
    2. Ardha” = “half”
    3. Chandra” = “moon”
    4. Asana” = “pose or posture”

English translations of this pose vary, including “Half Moon Twist Pose”, “Twisting Half Moon Pose” and others. But no matter what your teacher/instructor calls it, when you add it to your yoga practice, you will get all the benefits of this yoga pose!

Information

Known as:Revolved Half Moon Pose, Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana
Sanskrit name:परिव्रत अर्ध चंद्रासन
IAST:Parivrtta Ardha chandrāsana
Pronunciation:PAHR-ee-VREE-tah ARD-uh chan-DRAHS-uh-nuh
Type:Standing balancing pose
Level:Intermediate to advanced
Total time:30 seconds plus
Drishti:Upward;
Forward;
At the floor
Chakra:Manipura Chakra, Swadisthana Chakra, Muladhara Chakra
Focus:Legs, abdominal, core, and spine
Indications:Flexibility, stress, focus and concentration, quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, balance, coordination, digestive system, bloating constipation
Counterposes:Adho mukha svanasana, Uttanasana, Baddha konasana
Preparatory Poses:Ardha chandrasana, Eka pada ardha uttanasana, Parivrtta trikonasana
Follow-up poses:Parivrtta hasta padangusthasana, Parivrtta ardha chandra chapasana
Contraindications:Low blood pressure, Headache, Knee injury, Neck injury (keep gaze to the floor)

Benefits of Revolved Half Moon Pose (Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana)

The practice of Revolved Half Moon (Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana) which is a combination of twist and balance, and when done with proper guidance and awareness, has many physical and mental benefits. These are given below:

  1. Physical Benefits:
    • Strengthens the feet, ankles, knees, and thighs
    • Stimulates digestion and circulation
    • Tones the abdominal muscles
    • Improves balance
    • Opens the chest and lungs
    • Stretches the hamstrings
  2. Mental Benefits:
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Step by step Revolved Half Moon Pose (Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana)

  1. Start in a Lunge with the left foot forward and the right leg straight.
  2. Inhale and lift up to balancing on the right leg and the fingertips of both hands.
  3. Bring the right hand to your hip. Inhale, shrug the right shoulder to the right ear, and roll it back, twisting to open the chest to the right. Extend the right arm directly above your right shoulder. Exhale and extend from the pelvis out through your feet. Inhale; extend from the low belly up through your head and out through your arms. Keep the left hand directly below your left shoulder. Engage the leg muscles to the bone and draw the muscles from the floor up to your pelvis. Keep the left leg lifted to hip height.
  4. Hold for 30-60 seconds, then look down and place both hands on the floor. Exhale and lower the right leg down. Place the hands on your hips, root through your feet into the floor, inhale, and come up to standing. Repeat this process on the other side.

Variations and modifications

There are many variations and modifications to Revolved Half Moon Pose that can help make the pose more accessible or challenging, depending on your level of practice and flexibility. If you are new to the pose or have physical limitations, you may need to modify the pose to make it more accessible. Similarly, if you are looking to deepen the pose, you can try several variations.

The following are the variations and modifications of this yoga pose, along with instructions on how to perform them:

Modifications

Use a block for support – This modification is helpful if you have trouble balancing in the pose. Place a block on the ground under your arm or hold it in your hand to help stabilize the pose. This will provide support and make it easier to balance while you work on building strength and flexibility. As you become more comfortable with the pose, you can gradually reduce the support provided by the block.

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Use a wall for support – If you’re a beginner or have difficulty maintaining balance, it can be helpful to practice half moon pose with your back against a wall. Stand with your back against a wall and place your hands on the wall for support. This modification will help you focus on the rotation of the spine and build strength and flexibility without worrying about falling.

Place the lifted leg on a block – If you are struggling to balance on one leg, place the lifted leg on a block. This will provide extra support and make it easier to maintain balance while you work on building strength and flexibility. You can also use this modification if you have tight hamstrings or hip flexors.

Variations

  1. Extended Revolved Half Moon Pose – In this variation, raise the top arm to the sky while gazing at the ground. This variation helps deepen the stretch in the shoulders and upper back, and also challenges your balance and focus.
  2. Revolved Half Moon Pose with a bind – In this variation, reach top arm behind your back and join hands together. This variation helps to deepen the twist and stretch in the shoulders and upper back. You can use a strap or towel if you are unable to interlock your hands.
  3. Revolved Half Moon Pose with a lifted knee – In this variation, bend the raised leg and bring the knee toward your chest. This will help you maintain balance and stability as you work on building strength and flexibility.

Common mistakes

Revolved Half Moon Pose is a challenging pose that requires balance, flexibility, and concentration.

The common mistakes that practitioners can make while performing this pose are explained below. By paying attention to the following mistakes and using the tips to correct them, you can deepen your practice of this yoga pose and experience its full benefits:

1. Collapsing the chest

When rotating the torso, it is common for the chest to drop and the shoulders to roll forward. This can compromise the integrity of the currency and make it difficult to balance.

How to fix it: Engage core muscles and keep shoulders back and down to keep chest from collapsing. Think of lengthening the spine from the top of the head to the tailbone and lifting the sternum up toward the ceiling.

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2. Sinking into the standing leg

When balancing on one leg, it is common to shift the weight too far forward or backward, causing the knee to drop or hyperextend. This can put undue stress on the knee joint and compromise stability.

How to fix it: To avoid sinking in the standing leg, press the muscles of the foot and leg firmly into the ground. Keep the knee over the ankle, and try to maintain a slight bend in the knee to prevent hyperextension.

3. Losing focus

When attempting a challenging pose like Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana, it is easy to lose focus and become distracted by external stimuli or internal thoughts. This can make it difficult to maintain balance and proper alignment.

How to fix it: To stay centered in the pose, bring your attention to the breath and use it as an anchor. Take slow, deep breaths and visualize the pose in your mind’s eye, focusing on the alignment and sensations in the body. You can also use a focal point, such as a spot on the floor or a vision (vision point), to help you maintain balance and concentration.

Precautions and contraindications

The practice of this yoga pose requires proper guidance and instructions should be clear and easy. But there are certain physical conditions for which this practice should be stopped, and yoga teachers/Instructor should be aware of these.

1. Injury and surgery

Since the practice of this yoga pose is harsh on joints and muscles, individuals should avoid any kind of injury to the hip, shoulder, spine, neck, wrist, knee and ankle joints. Any previous injury should also be taken into consideration, because while doing this yoga pose, it can cause more wear and tear. Ligament tears or damage to the knees, wrist and ankle are contraindications and therefore should be avoided. Individuals recovering from recent surgeries or chronic surgeries should keep the yoga teacher/Instructor informed and yoga teachers/instructors should pay attention to such conditions of their students.

2. Sickness and physical strength

Any history of illness related to the physical and mental body of the individuals should be taken into consideration by the Yoga teacher/instructor. Even if students have fully recovered, it is always safe to slow down the practice with proper awareness as one does not want to trigger any symptoms related to a specific disease. Physical conditions, such as weak bones, low energy levels, weak muscle bodies, poor breathing practices, etc., are all contraindications and yoga teachers/instructors should make notes of the same. Regardless of the above situations, yoga should be carefully understood by teachers/instructors. Each body has its own composition of doshas, and some combinations of doshas may not respond well to twist and balance.

3. Lack of body-awareness

There may be a lack of breath coordination in the body of individuals suffering from severe asthma, given that Revolved Half Moon (Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana) is a diversion and balance exercise. Although this can be an optional practice when done along a wall or along a block, it can be challenging for some. A feeling of uneasiness may arise because they may inadvertently hold their breath in one turn.

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