Tips for Cobra Pose

I recently led a workshop focusing on ways to strengthen the back and when I taught cobra, almost every student said that pose was uncomfortable for them.  Most described a crunching feeling in their back when doing this pose.  So, I thought I would give you some simple pointers that will help you feel better in cobra!  

  1. Play with how high you lift.  
    • Some people lift their head and shoulders really high so most of the weight is in the hands.  There is nothing wrong with that; however, you may feel pain in your low back when you do that.  So, instead, practice not lifting as high and hovering your hands above the mat to develop strength in your back.
  2. Press evenly into the tops of the feet (pinky toe, as well as big toe side of foot).
  3. Gently spin your inner thighs up towards the ceiling.
  4. Lightly draw your belly away from the floor.
  5. Think of getting length to lift, rather than just lifting the head and shoulders straight up towards the ceiling.  Draw your chest forward as you press your toes behind you to find extension in the spine, rather then crunching.

Try combining all these things when practicing cobra to see how they feel!  And let me know if it makes a difference for you!