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Why Are Yoga Asanas Named After Animals?

Why Are Yoga Asanas Named After Animals?

Dogs, cobras, cows, cats, and many other animals find a mention when it comes to lending their names and posture to various yogic poses. Some of the poses or asanas also depict the birds. While it is interesting that these asanas are named after animals, it is not clear if they were named so just because the animals did it.

What appears to be a logical answer is that the earliest yogis observed how these animals behaved and maintained their various poses and which physical exercise or psychological exercise would suit that pose.

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For example, animals in the cat family spend most of their time relaxing or sleeping. A lot of these relaxing techniques come from stretching various parts of their bodies, especially their spine, moving slowly and loosening the body. Similarly, Marjaryasana or cat-pose-yoga provides a gentle massage or relaxation to the spine and belly organs. These stretches benefit the back, torso and neck.

Which other yoga pose did you learn that is related to animals?

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