Side Crow, or Parsva Bakasana, is usually the next pose students learn after Crow Pose. It requires a lot of core engagement in the obliques as well as a strong upper body. If you’re ready to learn this powerful arm balance, here’s how to do it.
1. Chair Twist
Start in chair pose with your big toes touching, knees bent and the weight in the heels. As you exhale find a twist by bringing your right elbow over the top of your left thigh. Keep your knees together and don’t let the right knee slide past the left. Maintain a deep opening in the chest.
2. Side Crow Prep
From your twist, place your palms on the mat shoulder width distance apart. Bend your elbows a little bit like you would in chaturanga. Engage the pectorals by hugging the arms in, drop the hips very low and lift the heels off the ground. Lean your chest forward and start applying more pressure in the palms.
3. Side Crow
Keep looking forward and reaching with your heart as you transfer as much weight as you can in the fingertips and knuckles. Your left thigh (top of the knee) will be resting on your right elbow. Some people create a shelf with both elbows to support both the hip and the thigh, this is a good method for beginners as it requires less core strength. Keep leaning and engaging the abdominals as you lift the toes and feet off the ground. Hold for a few breaths.
4. Scissor Side Crow
If you’re feeling good here and would like to play around a bit more, start extending the legs. This requires more balance and core strength so move slowly and mindfully. Your right leg will reach up and back while your left leg extends straight out. Try not to collapse in the chest, Keep the elbows over the palms and breathe.
Voila! There you have it, that’s side crow!
As always with arm balances or any other challenging postures, be kind and compassionate towards yourself and don’t worry if it doesn’t work right away. This practice is an evolution and you want to enjoy the journey every step of the way.
Please share this post with your friends and let me know if you have any questions 🙂
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