- Advanced Yoga: One-Handed Handstand Prep Video With Marysia Weiss (kukhahnyoga.com)
Above you can see the most basic example of external rotation of the arms in the first photo the model has the hands alongside her body her thumbs pointing away from her body. (in internal rotation the thumbs would point in see below) In the second photo the model has kept the external rotation of the arms and taken her arms up overhead. Several amazing things are happening here.
Proper Alignment When Taking the Arms Overhead in External Rotation
Work your External Rotation in Plank, Downward Dog and Cat/Cow Poses.
Need Still Further Convincing that Externally Rotating Your Arms is Important?
“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.”
― Leonardo da Vinci
The Pre-Inversion Warmup
Learn how to externally rotate your arms and strengthen your forearms in this amazing dolphin pose variation by Jill Miller.
The Serratus is a badass muscle that lives underneath you underarm and wraps your front body to your back body. Hiding from plain view like a ninja shrouded by darkness this muscle doesn’t get noticed.
Until now…(cue dramatic music…)
To my delight this variation on dolphin pose addresses both of those issues!
On top of all that it also feels delicious in its ability to solidify the shoulders onto the upper back. It feels sturdy. Always a good thing when you plan to balance upon them.
Dolphin Pose with Palms Facing Up
a) Rest forearms on a yoga mat, and place a yoga block in between the wrists along the pinky side of hands.
b) Pike the hips upwards, forming an upside down “V” shape with the body (bend the knees if the hamstrings are very tight).
c) Attempt to press the thumb side of the hand into the floor, and feel the traction and stretch deeply within the muscles of the forearms as the spine extends away from the rooted forearms.
(Item D is my addition to Jill’s amazing instruction)
d) Prepare for world domination now that you have the mighty Serratus holding your shoulders on your upper back like superman’s cape!
How does one go about conquering their fear of inversions?
Just do it.
That is to say in yoga, as in life itself, there are no shortcuts.
You have to do the work.
I heard a teacher tell that to a student last week when asked how to get better at a pose and it made the whole room laugh. Mostly because he acknowleged thst on some level we are all looking for a shortcut. A way to conquer our fears that is less difficult, less confronting, and of course quicker.
While there are certainly guidelines and principles that will guide you in being more efficient with your efforts, nothing can take the place of simply stepping onto your mat and doing the work.
Unrolling your mat is half of the battle.
There is a very true saying that goes “Where your attention goes prana flows”. In order to wake up “sleepy” places inside our bodies we have to visit them. We must go about reawakening them over and over again.
It is scary. It kinda feels like walking out to the edge of a cliff and hanging ten of the side preparing for a high dive.
In order for it to feel second nature you have to go to that place where it is no longer comfortable or safe.
This is where the breath comes in. The breath keeps us in our bodies. It keeps us in the moment. It keeps us steady, easy and consistent.
Without the wisdom and guidance of the breath we also may become overly ambitious thrashing about unwittingly without proper limitations. The breath keeps us grounded, sensitive and aware.
Badass Yoga Video: Briohny Smyth Inspires Us To Get On The Yoga Mat
This video is inspiring because it’s like watching two old people holding hands as the walk down the street, it shows love and commitment. I think maybe what inspires me the most however is that it shows a continual curiosity.
Yoga is endless.
Just when you think you’ve mastered one aspect of it, trust me you’ve only just begun.
I often liken my yoga practice to a relationship. If you ever find yourself in a long relationship regardless of how amazing you or the other person is you will probably feel bored at one point or another. It makes me want to cringe just saying it, because part of me does not want to accept that to be true.
However, the good news is, you don’t have to be. See, boredom is the assumption that there is nothing left to know, there is nothing new. This is never true. You can never know anyone completely, because they are always evolving with every breath. You just have to be curious. Dig deeper. The same goes for yoga, you will never know everything about yoga. In fact, the more you know, the more you know you don’t know. So cliché’ yet so true. Hopefully this video makes you peel back the curtain and be curious. Roll out your yoga mat and gaze at it like a newfound lover. Get curious.
How To Kick From Down Dog To Handstand Yoga Video With Angela Kukhahn
Ever wonder how people kick from handstand from downward dog? Magic? Nope! Just a few simple steps to get your float on! Watch this short yoga video on inversions and you will be flying into handstand from downward dog in no time!
Happy Handstanding Yogis!