Actively staying in this posture helps you to relax your shoulders, let go of stress, bring more flexibility into your spine and correspondingly into your life, to relax and to stop thinking and to open up your heart to guide you in your actions.
In order to get the best effects of the posture, here are some tips on how to improve your practice:
- To get into this posture, start off lying on your stomach, having your legs stretched out behind and feet flat with soles facing up.
- Press into your feet so your entire legs are super active and strong – especially in your hamstrings. Maintain internal rotation of your hips.
- Then bend your arms at the elbows and bring your entire lower arms towards you with palms flat on the floor, fingers facing forward.
- Palms should be directly under your shoulders. Check that each of your fingertips remains active.
- With inhalation, press into your palms and raise your head, neck and shoulders off the ground into a backbend, opening up your heart, the neck is aligned with the spine not scrunched back.
- Hold in this posture, and feel how your shoulders are relaxing, smile and enjoy that your back is getting stronger.
- Once again try to press your feet into the floor, connect with all your inner back muscles and use them to hold your body in the position, rather than leaving it all to just your back alone.
- To check if your practice is correct, you can lift up your hands a bit to see if you are truly using your core and back muscles or mainly your arms. If you are mainly using your arms, then strengthen your back and core muscles.
- Later, you can also spread your legs a bit and then straighten your arms for a deeper back muscle stretch and strengthening. Be careful here if you suffer from lower back pain.
This posture strengthens the arms, the entire back and spine as well as the obliques. There is also an intensive stretch happening in the chest, biceps, front of hips and the sides and front of the body.
It is important to feel right when you do the posture. Everyone is different; therefore my posture will look different from yours. As in our first week of practice, keep your focus on conscious movement, listening to, connecting to and feeling your body.