Yoga Wheel Sequence
March 13, 2017
Mindfulness adds meaning
March 13, 2017

A Safer Wheel

The quest for the spacious wheel can be quite daunting when you are new to yoga.

I remember when I was new to yoga.  I would already dread the expected wheel (urdha dhanurasana) towards the end of class.  My hands would start sweating just thinking about it.  As soon as I hear the teacher say, ‘come onto your back, set up for bridge pose’; my whole body would tense up.  I would force my body and my back used to pain so much.  It felt horrible.

Coming down I would quickly look to see if anybody noticed my pathetic attempt.  I hated backbends so much!  I was never flexible in my back and all the hours I spend in front of my computer certainly doesn’t help!

It took me years before I started falling in love with backbends.  Especially the notorious urdhva dhanurasana, which actually means upward facing bow pose.  I like calling it wheel.  It symbolizes that there is no end or beginning to this pose.  It continues forever and there will never be a destination.  Forever caught in a loop of impossible possibilities.

Wheel is now one of my favourite postures and I believe I found the nectar to this sweet yoga posture!

Here are some tips:

  1. Warm up shoulders and hips properly first.
  2. Release tension in your belly by practicing Uddiyana Bandha and other core activating postures, including standing postures.
  3. Breathe!  As deep down into the low back ribs and belly as you can.
  4. Remember the earth is your friend, stand strong!
  5. Try pulling up rather than pushing up (hug hands and feet towards each other.
  6. Backbends are progressive.  Take it in steps and don’t force it.
  7. Try to lengthen your lower spine and breathe into your belly.
  8. Propel the back of your heart forward, let the bend come from your upper back.
  9. Keep practicing and believe in yourself.

Let me know if these tips help by commenting below.

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