today's yoga tidbits: airplane pose

Today’s #yogatidbits: Airplane pose. This about options in taking flight. What to do when number 4 isn’t quite there yet. Personally, I’m not a fan of the “yes” and “no” or “right” or “wrong” or “good” and “bad” examples floating around. Let’s take it to try this and try that, a little less shame in the game.
For those of you having wobbly bits in airplane, try the first 3 boxed photos. Give yourself time to build in this pose. More encouragement, I say!
- Photo 1: plant your left foot, knee slightly bent engaging your leg. Your right toes stay perched on the earth, helping stability. Palms at your heart, encouraging your shoulders back, gazing slightly ahead of the earth, creating a long spine.
- Photo 2: similar to photo 1; slowly begin to lift your right leg, keeping the knee bent, engaging your leg and backside (das booty! Yes!). Try hugging your front ribs in and down towards your hips.
- Photo 3: sometimes, on those extra wobbly days, we need support. Blocks are great, pressing your hands to a wall or planting them on a chair or desk are also wonderful options. This will help you steady as you strengthen, while playing with lifting your back leg. See if you can flex your right foot, rotating your right hip slightly down, allowing the internal thigh to rotate up and lift.
Whatever foot is planted, try a firm foot, all four corners down. Practice cobra and upward-facing dog to encourage your heart forward and up, shoulders back. Your center engagement is key to balance, beyond the eye-gaze. It takes time to build core strength (front to back, head to tail). Every bit of your body is working standing on one foot.
Remember, balancing postures go straight to the head, right to self-talk. See if you can steady your focus with long breaths and gaze ahead at the floor in front of you if you need some extra grounding/steadying.
Give yourself time and space. Modify and build with love and grace. Being wobbly teaches us the uncertainties of life and will certainly challenge the self-talk. It is not often we balance on one foot, have compassion for yourself. Come back to center and try again and again.

stephanie birch