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Episode 99: Q&A – Jason’s Tips for Nailing Forearm Balance

Pincha mayurasana tips | Jason Crandell quote | Yogaland pocast

Jason’s back on the podcast answering some of our listeners most common questions. This week we tackle questions related to Pincha Mayurasana (Forearm Balance). He shares his best Pincha Mayurasana tips.

Plus, we dive into:

* Headless Headstand – An alternative pose that can help newbies build up to Pincha Mayurasana or Forearm Balance

* Three things the shoulders need to be in order to practice Forearm Stand: Strength, flexibility, and (most importantly) an understanding of the muscle integration and a mastery of the technique and skill required for the posture

* A conversation about Jason’s biggest pet peeve that he sees students do when they’re setting up for Pincha Mayurasana and Headstand (and why Andrea politely agrees to disagree)

* How to avoid having an excessive curvature in the low back (a phenomenon often called “banana back”) in Pincha Mayurasana

* Four helpful Pincha Mayurasana variations

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RECOMMENDED AND RELATED LINKS

Pose Notebook: Avoid the Banana in Pincha Mayurasana

A Shoulder Opening Sequence to Forearm Balance

Episode 97: Q&A – Jason Addresses Feeling Like the Odd Man Out

Episode 96: Jason’s Ideas for Overcoming Fear & Other Handstand Obstacles

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A Shoulder Opening Sequence to Forearm Balance

30 Minute Forearm Stand Sequence | Forearm Balance Pincha Mayurasana Sequence | Jason Crandell Vinyasana Yoga Method

WHY THIS FOREARM STAND SEQUENCE WORKS

This sequence leading to Forearm Stand focuses on creating greater range of movement in your shoulders. Tightness in the shoulders—particularly flexion of the shoulder joint—will distort the spine, pelvis, and legs. More often than not, these distortions produce a banana shape in the posture. When the vertical integrity of the posture is lost because the body has moved into a banana shape, it’s harder to sustain the posture because the rest of your body is overworking to compensate. Core strength can minimize this banana shape pattern, but it’s important to work at the root of the problem, which is almost always the shoulders.

Poses 1-4 will stretch your shoulders and upper back and prepare you for the demands of Handstand and Pincha Mayurasana or Forearm Balance. I included two postures to stretch your rhomboids—Garudasana Arms and Cat Pose—because these postures help your scapulae and allow rotate more easily. Scapular rotation essential for all postures that take your arms overhead, especially inversions.

Poses 5-6 begin to warm up your entire body. Down Dog continues to stretch your shoulders and arms, while the Low Lunge with your fingers interlaced releases tension on the front of your shoulders, abs, and hip-flexors.

Poses 7-10 introduce balancing postures to the sequence. I always find that standing balances prior to hand balances help remind me to go slow and focus on my contact points with the floor. This helps prepare my mind for the demands of hand balances. Reverse Warrior is a nice inclusion in this sequence because it releases tension in the side body, especially the lats. Tension in the lats is one of the largest obstacles to Forearm Balance.

Two more things about Forearm Stand:

First, when you subscribe to our newsletter, we’ll send you a free downloadable PDF of the sequence above.

And second, for a more detailed look at alignment instructions for Forearm Stand (Pincha Mayurasana), you can check out this tutorial.

{illustrations by MCKIBILLO}

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