WORKING TOWARDS PINCHA MAYURASANA
Pincha Mayurasana, Forearm Balance, is one of the most fun and rewarding poses to master. It requires a lot of upper body and core strength as well as flexibility in the shoulders. It takes time, dedication and practice to master the pose but enjoy the journey of exploring your body and see it begin to open and build strength.
The below poses will help you build strength, gain confidence and increase flexibility in the shoulders.
HOLLOW BODY ROCKS
1. Begin in Navasana (boat pose), either with knees bent or legs straight, squeeze the inner thighs together and lift up from the perineum (pelvic floor) to engage the core muscles.
2. Rock back and extend the arms and legs but maintain the hollow body shape. Interlace the thumbs and reach your arms along either side of your ears. Tuck the tailbone slightly so there is a rounding of the lower back.
3. Rock backwards and forwards maintaining the shape for 30-60 seconds.
4. Finish in Navasana and then repeat twice more.
1. From Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downwards Facing Dog) gaze towards the hands and slowly lower the elbows at the same time then the knees. Make sure the arms are parallel to each other and shoulder distance apart. See image below.
2. Stack your shoulders directly over your elbows and begin to lift the hips. Gaze towards the toes and walk your feet towards your head to find greater lift in the hips. Press down in your feet to engage and lift the front of your legs. Use the lower belly to elevate the hips and tailbone.
3. Breath here for 5 breaths then take Childs pose (Balasana). Repeat but with one leg raised then switch legs rest in Childs pose between.
AGAINST THE WALL
1. Come into Childs pose with your toes touching the wall. Place your arms out in front of you shoulder distance apart. Spread your hands wide with your index finger facing forward. Walk your feet up the wall, gaze towards the wall and hold at 90 degrees.
2. Push into the elbows to lengthen the spine and shoulders, lifting away from the ground.
3. Take one leg straight and begin to point the foot connected to the wall, maybe finding a bit of balance or hover.
4. Use the fingers as breaks to prevent the torso from toppling over ahead
(Same as image above but against the wall)
1. Lie down on your front and line up your right elbow and shoulder at a 90 degree angle.
2. Gaze towards the left and place your left hand in front but a little away from your face and then begin to stack the hips taking your left leg behind your right. Make sure you engage the lower belly and lengthen the right leg pushing the heel away from you to protect the lower back as you might find a slight pinching.
3. Breath into the stretch in the right pectoral muscle and visualise the muscle softening and lengthening on each exhale. Keep the right shoulder rolled from the ear. Repeat on left side.
Keep practicing and the pose will come!