Welcome day 15 of the challenge!! Today’s challenge will prep you to execute Crane pose-BakAsana!
BUT FIRST ………some knowledge:
I did say we would continue to concentrate on our core!! When I say “core” I don’t mean just your “abs”, the core is made up of many more muscles that start at the bottom of your ribs down to the top of the hips and down to the bottom of your pelvis. The 6 main muscles that make up your “core” are the transverse abdominis, diaphragm, rotators, multifidus, quadratus lumborum, and the pelvic floor.
There are a few ways to activate your core in preparation for movement: In yoga we use bandhas or “locks”
- Mula Bandha “root lock”- the pelvic floor muscles– This bandha uses the muscles in the space between the bones of the pubis in the front, the sitting bones on the sides and the coccyx in the back , activating and engaging these muscles help to support the internal organs and your lower back, to help prevent more strain on the overworked muscles especially in our hip flexors (ex: the psoas muscles) that is a major cause of low back pain
- How to- Activate the space between the front and back of your pelvic floor with an upward tug or lift. Imagine a sensation in that space as if a tissue is being drawn up through the cellophane of a tissue box.:) Yah! just like that! &BREATHE….
- Uddiyanda Bandha- “Upward flying lock”- Engaging the abdominal muscles as the diaphragm is drawn upward under the rib cage, this benefits by supporting, toning and lifting our insides, and increasing the range of motion of the diaphragm to ensure that dukkha (stagnate energy/stale air) that remains in the lung sacs is released up and out.
- How to- Engage the abdominals at the bottom of an exhale, pulling the navel up and in towards the spine. &BREATHE….
These bandhas take time to master and are used throughout many yoga poses like downward facing dog, but luckily you can practice just about anywhere like in the checkout line at the grocery store, no one will ever know!! * Be proactive and look up more benefits on how using bandhas improve your practice and well being off the mat!
So are you READY? Leggo!!
1.Table Top- connect and fire up your core using your breath and engage your bandhas. Take 5-10 full deep breaths.
2.Plank Pose-Keeping shoulders over wrists, inhale as you curl the toes under, legs go straight to come up. Keep core and legs engaged, gaze forward.
3.High Plank – From your plank pose, rise up on tippy toes and bring your shoulders forward, arching your back, tucking in the belly-Stay for 5 breaths. Repeat 3 times.
4.Knee to forehead PLANK- Inhale & exhale bring your knee to meet your forehead. Alternate both sides and hold for 5 breaths.
5.BOAT to low BOAT- hold both poses for 5 breaths. Keep the belly in, shoulders open and spine long.
6.Floatting boat- keep your toes up bringing your knees closer to your triceps or upper arms, hold this for 5 breaths.
This pose will teach you to keep an active core in the shape of crow.
7. Kakasana (Crow Pose)- Start in a squat on your toes, exhale and rest your knees on your triceps or upper arms, plant your hands on the floor and bend your elbows.
Shift the weight forward and stabilize the shoulders as the hips and toes raise up. Pull in your lower abs, and arch your back as your head comes closer to the floor; Your gaze is a few inches in front of your fingertips.
Bending your elbows more, keep the weight level and work to bring your big toes to touch.
HOLD this for 5 breaths.
If you need more practice at any step take the time to, and then continue when you are ready. We are our best teachers!
AS your practice gets better you can work towards straightening your arms and working your knees to rest higher towards your arm pits to get into CRANE POSE-
NAMSTE BEAUTIFUL YOGIS!!