Photo of Maggie Anderson taken by Morayo Sayles
Crow (or Crane) is a great pose for strengthening the arms and the core. This pose challenges your balance and you want to be sure you head into the pose in just the right way and in the right time for you. You might not get right into this pose on your first shot. I know I didn’t. It took a few years of practicing till I could have the abs and arm strength as well as the determined focus on my mind and body awareness for the supreme balance that comes with working in Crow Pose. I love that I can do it now and know that doing this pose shows off my hard work. But coming into this pose now, I enjoy more of the mind-body connection and ultimate meditation that occurs. I can really feel myself going deep. I feel my mind release if only for a moment and utter peace can be felt. 🙂
Directions on how to come into the pose:
This pose is sometimes easier to watch someone flowing into the pose first and for first timers it’s best to have a teacher nearby to be sure you are not flowing into this pose improperly and therefore possibly cause an injury. That being said, first being in Tadasana (Mountain pose). With feet only a few inches apart, bend down into a squat position. Separate your knees wider than your hips. Hands pressed firmly down on the mat in front of you about shoulder distance apart, elbows slightly bend. Position your shins just behind your upper arms and knees almost nestled into your armpits and/or beginning to rest on your upper arm. As you lift up onto the balls of your feet, slide the upper arms down as low onto the shins as possible, leaning forward even more. Hips will lift up to approximately shoulder height (no higher). Hug in the core. Feel the thighs begin to work as well. Weight shifts to the upper arms even more. Rounding of the back may occur to assist you in positioning yourself here and then a lengthening of the spine thereafter. Continue to shift the weight forward and see if you can begin to lift one foot off the floor and then maybe both. Keep head in a neutral position looking down or gazing slightly up. If this isn’t challenging enough, see if you can straighten your arms even more.
Hold for 20 seconds to one minute. Slowly lower to come out and back into squat position. Roll out your wrists here to release the tension. Lot’s of pressure on the wrist in Crow pose.
When not to do this pose or to modify / Contraindications:
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome or any wrist issues, Pregnancy
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