Kate from What Kate Ate and Tina from Carrots N Cake decided to declare May “ Yoga Pose May ”. Everyday in May, a different blogger features a yoga pose on their blog. And today is my day! I love yoga because of how it makes me feel. It is so different from any other form of exercise. It, more than anything else, makes me want to challenge myself to new levels and allows me to truly appreciate my body. The way you feel after an amazing yoga class just can’t be replicated! I heart yoga
My pose is Bow Pose (Dhanurasana) This was taken in the middle of the streets of NYC(specifically Lafayette and Spring in SoHo)! It was so much fun taking this picture and I love how no one in the background is even fazed! Though, truth be told, I did get quite a few people looking at me!
Bow pose got it’s name because it looks like an archer’s bow with the torso and legs representing the body of the bow, and the arms the string.
1) Lie on your belly with your hands alongside your torso, palms up. Exhale and bend your knees, bringing your heels as close as you can to your buttocks. Reach back with your hands and take hold of your ankles (but not the tops of the feet). Make sure your knees aren’t wider than the width of your hips, and keep your knees hip width for the duration of the pose.
2) Inhale and strongly lift your heels away from your buttocks and, at the same time, lift your thighs away from the floor. Burrow the tailbone down toward the floor, and keep your back muscles soft. As you continue lifting the heels and thighs higher, press your shoulder blades firmly against your back to open your heart. Draw the tops of the shoulders away from your ears. Gaze forward.
Stay in the pose from 20-30 seconds and be sure not to stop breathing!
Here I am trying to lift my heels and thighs higher off of my mat.
Ultimately, you will want your thighs high off the ground like so:
Stretches the entire front of the body, ankles, thighs and groins, abdomen and chest, and throat, and deep hip flexors (psoas)
Strengthens the back muscles
Stimulates the organs of the abdomen and neck
I really like this pose, but it can be a challenge for those with back issues. To make it more comfortable, you can lie on a folded blanket to pad the front of your torso and legs. And, if it isn’t possible for you to hold your ankles directly, wrap a strap around the fronts of your ankles and hold the free ends of the strap, keeping your arms fully extended.
Anne , Anna , and Christie are also doing Bow Pose today, so go and check them out!