Shoulder Pressing Posture (Bhujapidasana)


Shoulder Pressing Posture (Bhujapidasana) is the first arm balance posture we practice in the Ashtanga Primary series. It will test your strength and flexibility and will help strengthen the hands, wrists, and abdominal muscles. Sanskrit (boo-JAH-pee-DAHS-anah) bhuja = arm, shoulder pida = pressure

Avoid/Contraindications:

Injuries in your wrist, elbow, lower back, or shoulder.


Modifications:

  • Try to practice putting weight into your hands by bending the knees, tucking the tailbone down, and keeping the weight in the hands. Then look to the front and try hopping to the outside of hands.

  • Keep feet on the ground if you cannot lift your feet.

  • Try practicing Bakasana (Crow Pose) with knees on backs of elbows instead

I encourage you to warm up the hips, wrists, and shoulders before jumping into this position.


How To:

  • Start in a downward-facing dog

  • Bring tailbone down, bend knees, and then curl tailbone under.

  • Jump feet to outside of the hands, knees above elbows. When you jump don’t jump higher than the hip’s height.

  • You may want to try this hopping motion where you bend knees, tuck the tail, keep the weight in the hands, look to the front and try hopping to outside of your hands

  • Legs stay active, squeeze the thighs in, keep hamstrings active

  • To come out of the pose, keep knees where they are, uncross feet, pull knees behind arms for bakasana (crow pose), and then jump back to chaturanga

  • To modify coming out of the pose, uncross feet and lower to ground. Step one foot behind the arm and then the other, then step back to high plank.

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