Maximize the Power of Arm Balances
There are a variety of yoga poses that can contribute to overall physical gains, and definitely, the power of arm balances cannot be discounted. Arm balances are considered by many as one of the more challenging poses because of the certain skill level required to accomplish the various poses. It requires a combination of body characteristics to successfully pull them off and be able to benefit from it. Obviously, it requires considerable upper body and torso strengths to be able to do majority of the poses.
It is a fact that many of the people who first come to yoga do not have the required upper body and torso strength required to pull off the arm balances. The weakness in the upper body can be attributed to a number of factors like the lack of mobility or exercise in the arms, shoulders, abdomen, and chest areas. The sad reality is that when this type of weakness is not properly addressed, it results in a decrease in physical ability and strength that will negatively impact overall health. Because of this, it is necessary to understand the common considerations to receive the power of arm balances.
The need to create flexibility.
Undoubtedly, pulling off arm balances does not rely on mere strength, but also a good amount of flexibility. This means that as you begin to work on your upper body and abdominals, you must not lose focus on key areas that need flexibility. To receive the power of arm balances, you need ample flexibility in your spine because of the rounding forward, and twisting motion involved.
The same level of flexibility is also required on the hips, due to squatting exercises that can be part of the yoga practice. Although the arm balances would require you to remain stationary for some time, which requires strength, the movements that are needed to reach the final state of the pose will need the flexibility of your body. The flexibility allows you to relax certain portions of your body, like the neck for example, while tensing other parts like the legs, knees, and hips. Wrapping your arms around your outer legs and clasping your hands behind your back are good examples of the use of the combination of flexibility and strength.
Build your overall strength.
The motivation to do arm balances can be enhanced when the right amount of strength is present. The good news is that building and maintaining strength can be relatively easy, with the proper types of exercises, or yoga poses. This means that you can gradually ease into the arm balances, if you feel you do not have the right amount of upper body and abdominal strength at this stage.
There are numerous studies that reveal how the body positively responds to challenges of muscle building and bone density, regardless what stage of life you are in. Many of the poses that provide the power of arm balances place moderate weight on the shoulders and arms. This means requiring substantial strength in the deltoids, pectoral muscles, and triceps among others. As these muscles become stronger, the bone density will show significant increase as well. Be aware that building strength can take significant time to achieve, and so does doing the right arm balances.
Familiarization of arm balances.
To benefit from the power of arm balances, you need to be aware of the different poses that are commonly used in yoga. This means that you will be able to better understand how to maximize the combination of flexibility and strength to get the desired results. The most common arm balances are:
Basic Plank - similar to the push up exercise position, the shoulders should remain directly over the wrists.
Side Plank - from the basic plank, slightly lift the hips and shift the weight to one hand. The whole body should be rolled to one side.
Crow - move to a squat position with the feet mat width apart. The palms should be planted on the ground beneath the shoulders.
Half Crow - the easiest way to do this for beginners is to use the short downward dog position as a starting point.
Lifted Half Crow - using the half crow position, lift the back leg higher with the front knee touching the arm.
Dolphin - this is a good pose for building strength in the arms and shoulders. From the forearm stands, walk the feet towards the elbows to form an inverted letter 'V' with your body.
Dolphin Plank Pose - The forearms should touch the ground with the elbows directly under the shoulder. The whole body should be straight, with the core remaining tight.
Peacock - with the hands turned outwards and fingers facing backward lift your body with your legs straight and pointing backwards.
Firefly - Begin at the squat position with your feet mat width apart at the most. The legs should be straightened halfway with the shoulders tucked behind the knees.
Forearm Stand - The forearms should be lowered to the ground with the elbows directly under the shoulders and hands straight forward. The entire body from your shoulders should point upwards.
Handstand - do not make the mistake of jumping into the pose. The grounded foot can be used to lift your weight forward of the wrists. This will make it easier to move into the handstand pose while keeping your body relaxed.
There is no doubt on the benefits that yoga can deliver to the body. By understanding these three important considerations, you will be able to maximize the power of arm balances.
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