Be kind to your body and listen to your inner wisdom.
Warm up for any back bending pose with things like spinal rocking, easy twists, and a core strengthener.
Then warm up specifically with boat pose.
Boat Pose warm up: Lying prone, arms along side, anchor belly and lengthen toes away from waist and head away from waist - making you longer.
Lift head, shoulders and chest off floor slowly with full yogic breath throughout
Release and repeat.
Lift head, shoulders and chest, lengthen legs and lift legs so knees are off the floor, legs are straight..
Release, relax, and repeat.
Lift head, shoulders, chest, legs and lift arms slightly off floor - completely engaging all long back muscles. Keep breathing fully while holding and feel back muscles. Hold 3-4 breaths.
Cobra: Lying prone, hands under shoulders.
Anchor belly and lengthen toes away from waist.
Lift into Boat pose as above, then move hands closer to waist ~1-2" and press hands into floor. Do not completely straighten arms.
As Chest lifts, legs lower to ground, all while back muscles stay engaged. Fronts of thighs stay on ground..
Draw shoulders back and down. Breath into an open heart and invite joy into your pose. Do not strain or hold breath.
Lift and hold only to your ability. Move deeper into pose over repeated practices
Breathe, Relax, Feel, Witness, Allow.
Cobra is said to improve flexibility in the spine, strengthen arms, shoulders and back, have a positive influence on the respiratory and circulatory system, and create an improved mood.
Modifications include using only the warm-up boat pose until you feel more strength. Also performing the movement on forearms and entering sphinx pose as a more moderate practice.
Lisa Davidson teaches Kripalu Yoga in the Framingham/Natick area (since 1981) These yoga classes build health and awareness, strength, flexibility and contentment. Join a series or drop-in. Lisa also offers healing sessions in Polarity and Reiki. It is especially helpful for stress reduction and annoying conditions that nothing else seems to help. Often when the energy imbalance is resolved, the physical issues are as well.
contact lisa at email@example.com
see class schedule at whiteviewyoga.com/classes