Swanning It Up!

The Swan Pose is fantastic for people who want to improve the flexibility in their hips and spine. The sanskrit name for this pose is Ek Pada Raja Kapotasana. This is a great example of the different styles of yoga you may meet as you explore the topic. In some styles, it’s called King Pigeon Pose because of the way it pushes the chest out. The emphasis might be slightly different, but once you are in pose it will feel very similar.

As always, there are many variations on this pose if you’d like to make it easier – or want more of a challenge!

To make it easier, adopt a 90:90 position with your legs. If that’s too demanding, use yoga blocks to support you. The best option is to work with a skilled teacher who can help you move though the variations. To challenge yourself more, reach behind for your ankle with one or both hands.

You’ll notice the eye gaze (drishti) is to the sky. Another way to make things less challenging in yoga is to alter your gaze – start by looking forward then shift your gaze as you feel more comfortable and ready to move on.

There’s so much you can do with this pose. To explore it in all its glory, head to your local yoga studio for expert advice and coaching to learn the progressions that are most suitable for your needs.

This pose not suitable for you? That may be the case if you have issues with your knees, hips or ankles – an excellent reason to discuss any health concerns with your yoga teacher. Try Eye of the Needle Pose (Sucirandhrasana) instead… pictures and post to follow!

Please consult your doctor before making changes to your lifestyle such as going on a diet or embarking on an exercise programme.

Balance of the Day, Tree Pose

What an amazing balance this is! It might seem challenging if you’re new to yoga, but one of our roles is to show you how to adapt poses to suit your body, mood and experience level.

Once you’ve totally grounded your standing leg and fixed your eye gaze (drishti) in tree pose, you can experiment with style. Toes on the floor might be best for you, or you might be feeling extremely stable and ready to progress to placing your foot below your knee. Had an ace day and feeling steady as a rock? Brace your foot against your upper inner thigh as I’m doing, then breathe into Tree Pose.

Triangulate Your Day!

Some days this pose just feels so right: weight perfectly balanced over a stable base, evenly spread through both feet; hand resting wherever it lands. As the heat of the studio allows your muscles to relax you might find yourself able to move your hand further down.

Wanting more of a challenge? Allow your eye gaze to look up towards your hand and check your posture. Think, “Am I leaning forward? Do I need to straighten up more and imagine that my back is against a wall? Can I extend my arm and stretch my fingertips higher towards the ceiling?”.

Then just enjoy the moment, celebrate your journey and most of all breathe! Come and join us to discover just how amazing yoga can make you feel. Click here to book a class