Bakasana – Crow Pose
Bakasana – crow pose is normally the first arm/hand balance pose that is introduced to a yoga student. In my opinion this is because it is a symmetrical pose with even weight on both sides of your body. I don’t by any means think this pose is the first introduced because it is the easiest arm balancing pose. I have 100% confidence in about 90% of the arm balances I have been practicing with (this includes eka pada 1 and 2, firefly, dragonfly, side crow, mayurasana, bhujapidasana, kukkutasana, etc. etc. basically A LOT of arm balances), but crow is not one I can perfectly find everytime. I find that crow pose is practically impossible if your arms are sweaty or you moisturized recently (which is normally my case). You must have pretty open hips to get your knees right up into your armpit area, however even when you are very open and can get your knees that far up, when you shift your weight your knees can easily slip down. You must have pretty good core strength, arm strength, and strong adductor muscles. This is because once your knees are up in your armpits, you must squeeze your knees against your torso. your arms must be strong enough to support you when your elbows are bent, and your core must be strong to keep you compact. If you recently tried this pose for the first time, fear of falling on your face may also be a contributing factor to the difficulty, so practice with a foam block or pillow under your face (don’t forget to smile! Having a positive outlook helps SO much, believe me!). If you find this pose very challenging and have decided to master it before moving on to other hand balances, you may want to try other ones anyways just because they may not be as hard as crow for you. I love the challenge of this pose, all the strength and openness you need for an “introductory” hand/arm balance is very interesting to me since being so compact changes your stability, this is why I find this pose SO challenging, but tonnes of fun!!