‘Mayura’ means a peacock. This asana is a straight plane with the forearms as levers. When this asana is performed, the body assumes the posture which resembles a peacock, which explains the Sanskrit name Mayurasana. Compared with other asanas, this asana is difficult to practise. Physical fitness is a prerequisiteto practisethis asana. To gymnaststhis asana is easy.
Technique : Kneel on the floor with the knees slightly apart. Support the legs on the feet. Invert the palms and place them between the knees. There should be a distance of three to four cms between the palms. The little fingers should be placed together pointingtowards the feet. The thumbs should firmly press the ground. Keep both the hands steady and firm. Then slowly bring the elbows close to the abdomen just under the navel. Rest the diaphragm on the elbows. The elbows are placed together to provide a suitable fulcrum on which the horizontal body could rest. This is the first stage of Mayurasana.
Now, stretch the legs. Raise the heels and hold the legs parallel to the ground. If you find it hard to take both the legs backwards together, stretch the legs straight one by one and keep them together and stiff. If you try to slightly bend the trunk at the head, the legs would be lifted up of their own accord from the floor. Then it would be easy to stretch the legs backwards. When the posture is correctly assumed, the head, the hips, the thighs, the legs and the feet will be in a straight line parallel to the ground. Practise this asana for five to twenty seconds. Hold the breath at the time of raising the body. This will revitalize the body. Exhale quietly when the asana is completed. One who possesses a sound physique can practise this asana for two to three minutes.
(1) This asana gives much exercise in a limited time. It is a great energizing exercise. It amazingly increases the power of digestion.
(2) It cures the diseases caused by the excess of ‘vata’, ‘pitta’ and ‘kafa’ (wind, bile and phlegm). It stops the bleeding caused by piles. It also prevents diabetes.
(3) It strengthens the muscles of the arms, awakens the Kundalini and cures constipation.
(4) It exerts intra-abdominal pressure with the result that the abdominal organs and the lungs become rejuvenated, and it also eliminates the liver disorders.
(5) The practice of this asana stimulates the circulation of the blood in the body. Consequently, the body becomes bright and radiant.
(6) It prevents obesity in the body.