English-speaking yoga teachers often refer to space in their pose names, with examples including the “crescent moon” and “star” positions.
Now an astronaut performs these movements during a microgravity exercise on the International Space Station.
Expedition 67 astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti recently shared a photo of herself on Twitter doing a “triangle pose” in Japan’s Kibo lab, a popular spot for astronauts to pose for photos. and press conferences.
“Who said you can’t do yoga in space! At least you can try,” the European Space Agency astronaut tweeted (opens in a new tab) on Tuesday, June 21, accompanied by the photo. The Italian space thief added that she wants to try an even more ambitious routine soon.
Related: Astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti makes history with the 1st TikTok from the International Space Station
Cristoforetti, who is on TikTok to reach younger audiences, recently teamed up with Cosmic Kids Yoga (opens in a new tab) (a private company in operation since 2012) to develop a yoga routine optimized for space exploration.
“You know what? I love doing yoga here on Earth, and I wonder if it would work up there in space?” Cristoforetti asked in a May 23 video posted on the Cosmic Kids YouTube channel (opens in a new tab).
In response, certified yoga teacher Jaime Amor played out a possible space routine for Cristoforetti in the 20-minute video, adding a Yoga in Space activity pack. (opens in a new tab) for youngsters looking to stretch and do resistance training with the astronaut.
Who said you can’t do yoga in space! At least you can try 😁 I can’t wait to try the full yoga plan that @CosmicKidsYoga prepared for me! ▶️https://t.co/UVuLlV6aFe#MissionMinerva #InternationalDayofYoga pic.twitter.com/uIUFMxzBYrJune 21, 2022
Other astronauts managed to do yoga in orbit before Cristoforetti. For example, NASA astronauts Jack Fischer and Peggy Whitson showed off balancing poses in 2017, although Fischer joked on Twitter (opens in a new tab) that these are much easier to hold “without gravity”.
Additionally, NASA’s Christina Koch — who spent nearly a year in space — lists yoga as one of her hobbies in her official biography. (opens in a new tab).
Yoga has many health benefits, including improved strength, balance and flexibility, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine (opens in a new tab); yoga is also associated with more energy and better stress management, among other health outcomes.
The United Nations celebrated International Yoga Day on Tuesday, June 21, and noted that yoga has been crucial for global health since the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020.
“People around the world have embraced yoga to stay healthy and rejuvenated and to combat social isolation and depression during the pandemic,” the UN wrote. (opens in a new tab).
“Yoga also plays an important role in the psychosocial care and rehabilitation of COVID-19 patients in quarantine and isolation. It is particularly helpful in allaying their fears and anxiety.”
Follow Elizabeth Howell on Twitter @howellspace. Follow us on Twitter @Espacedotcom and on Facebook.