This is the first posture of Bikram yoga. It is called the standing deep breathing / Pranayama posture.
If you think that it is quite a mouthful saying it, wait till you come to the other postures. It is the first breathing exercise of which the second one will be done at the end of the class. My instructor says one of the benefits of bikram yoga is that it will set up your body to do the rest of the poses as this exercise helps you expand your lungs and take in more oxygen.
The benefits of this pose are:
1. good for the lungs and respiratory system (prevents shortness of breath, bronchitis etc.)
2. helps lung reach their maximum expansion capacity
3. increases circulation of oygenated blood throughout the body
4. Loosens frozen/tight shoulders
5. Relieves irritability and relaxes the mind
When doing this pose, it does help me take in more oxygen although my shoulders are still quite stiff..I can feel my lungs expanding BUT only if I make the effort to completely inhale and exhale correctly. Some lazy days, I just go through the motions. Terrible, I know…
Some people esp beginners start sweating at this stage. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t. Really depends on the number of people in the room are stealing my oxygen , thus making me inhale more! lol!