Yoga Move of the Day: Plow

11:00 AM

Yoga Poses Pictures & Instructions: Plow Pose

I've posted in the past about my love of yoga and many of you know that I often practice alone at home rather than in a class at a studio.

If you're interested in letting your mat feel the floor of your living room, I'd love to post about some poses that you could try.

The first one is Plow and it's somewhat advanced. I've chosen it because it's the pose I've been familiar with the longest: my sisters and I used to do this all the time when we were young. I have to say I've been plowin' since I was 4 or 5.

Plow is great for working many areas. It gives an excellent stretch to the whole back and, if done right, every muscle from your fingers to your toes. It stimulates the abs and is said to promote thyroid function. It can help relieve menopausal symptoms, infertility, sinusitis, backache, headache and insomnia. It it very calming to the mind and can help you to de-stress.

Rather than get right to it, take these steps to ease into it.(First change into something comfortable, get your feet naked, and roll out a mat. Turn off distractions like phones and TVs, and get going...)

To enter Plow

Start from mountain pose, or standing, and slowly lower yourself to the ground so you're in corpse, or laying flat down with your arms at your sides and your legs flat on your mat.

Using your hands to support your back, if needed, lift your toes high above your body, lifting your pelvis and making a straight line, with only your head, neck and upper back touching the floor. This is shoulder stand. Exhale and bend your hips further to allow your toes to touch the floor behind your head. If you'd like, try to take your hands off of your back and place them on the ground, palms down. Stretch your arms out. Lift your thighs high in the air and pull your chin away from your chest.

Finish by extending your legs back straight in the air, and coming softly down to corpse again.

Be Careful

This isn't safe for someone with a previous neck injury or for pregnant women. It is probably somewhat ambitious for someone who is using a Diva Cup (yikes). If you have any serious conditions like high blood pressure or heart problems ask your doctor before practising. It is an intermediate pose so attempting more basic poses first would be best. As always, yoga isn't a contest - don't overstretch. This is especially important if you're practising bikram, or hot yoga, because higher temperatures allow your muscles to stretch farther than they'd like.

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