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Wheel Pose

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๐—•๐—ฒ๐˜๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ป โ€œ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—•๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐—ด๐—ฒโ€ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ โ€œ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ช๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—นโ€

If Bakasana (Crow Pose) is the first milestone in the Arm Balance category, Urdhva Dhanurasna (Wheel Pose) is certainly the big milestone in Backbends. I still remember the first time I push up into a Full Wheel.

Urdhva Dhanurasana is such an iconic pose, because it is the Mother of all backbends.

In the calisthenics world, they call this pose โ€œBackbendโ€ & is also a pose that is usually used as a pre-requisite for Level 2 classes.

In yoga, Bridge pose, or Setu Bandhasana Sarvangasana in Sanskrit, is often used as the preparatory pose for wheel.

Bridge pose is not only performed in yoga. Itโ€™s performed in Pilates (& they call it โ€œBridgingโ€)

In Chatush Padasana or four-footed pose, instead of interlacing your fingers in Bridge pose, you grasp your ankles with your hands.

I find it helpful to keep the feet more parallel which is one of the challenges in bridge and wheel pose. When the feet are parallel, you feel more stable and can usually get into a deeper curve than Bridge.

The teaching here is that your weight is distributed equally around your feet and your shoulders as if you are standing on four feet.

How to do Chatush Padasana:

๐ŸŸฃ Lie down on the mat with your knees bent

๐ŸŸฃ Keep your legs & feet parallel and hip distance apart

๐ŸŸฃ Move your feet closer to your buttocks

๐ŸŸฃ Grasp your ankles by bringing your fingers around the front of the ankles. Grip firmly. If you cannot reach, you can put a belt around the front of your ankles and grasp the belt with both hands

๐ŸŸฃ Knees and ankles should be in a vertical, forming that โ€œfour footโ€ shape, press down firmly through the feet and lift the hips

To refine:

1๏ธโƒฃ Broaden the collarbone and get on the top of your shoulders (like a Shoulderstand position)

2๏ธโƒฃ Roll your thighs inwards, lift the outer hips & keep the thighs and shins parallel

3๏ธโƒฃ Lift the sternum up and upper back into the spine.

4๏ธโƒฃ Move the top shins towards your chest, and shins towards your shin

5๏ธโƒฃ Back of the neck is elongated to bring the chin and the chest close towards each other, relax the throat

Let me know how you like this version of the Bridge pose!

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