May Pose of the Month

Who is ready for a fun arm balance this month? Bakasana, Crow/Crane pose, is the perfect arm balance for beginner “arm-balancers”.

Just looking at a photo of this pose may be a little intimidating and may have you thinking you don’t have the upper arm strength to be able to get into the pose. So first, before you even attempt to practice the pose, LET ALL OF THAT GO! Let go of all the mental clutter and distractions- judgements, expectations, FEAR. A calm, focused mind is needed before getting into the pose.

The key to Bakasana is learning where your center of gravity is and how to distribute your weight so that you can balance. The more you practice the pose, once you find the “sweet spot”- what is enough weight forward into the arms and hands- you will notice your feet will naturally start to lift up off the floor. So be patient and easy with yourself if it takes some time for your crow to learn to fly.

It is also important to make sure you’re warming up for the pose with some core-focused poses/exercises. Employing the help of your core in Bakasana is essential to getting the lift you need, taking some of the weight off the shoulders and arms, so that your attention is distributed equally between the core/lower abdominals and upper body/shoulder girdle. Some good core strengtheners are: reclined crow, navasana and/or ardha navasana, plank, knee-to-nose plank, chaturanga dandasana.

Crow pose is a great wrist, forearm, and abdominal/core strengthener. It also stretches the upper back and helps to improve balance. Aside from the physical benefits of the pose, mastering Crow helps to build confidence and enhance your body control to help you on your journey to more arm balance poses.

When you’re ready to take flight, follow the steps below to practice Bakasana. Again, remember to enter the pose with a clear, calm, focused mind like a crow that is completely focused on the water, fishing for its food.

  • Begin in a toe squat with feet together and knees wide.

  • Bring the palms of hands flat on the floor beneath the shoulders, bend elbows as if going into chaturanga.

  • Lift the hips and shift the knees to rest in the armpits or upper arms.

  • Lift your gaze, taking it to a spot on the floor out in front of you and keep it there while in the pose.

  • Fire up your core and begin shifting the weight forward into the hands and arms to float toes off of the floor.

  • Once toes are lifted, lower hips toward heels.

Take flight this month with us in Bakasana and enjoy the empowering freedom of the flight! <3