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Lifting into Lolasana

16 September 2018 @ 13:30 - 15:00

Organised by : Martin Thompson

The ability to lift into Lolasana or pendant pose, provides a powerful launch pad for more complex arm balances, and it will build the foundations of floating through from Adho…

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The ability to lift into Lolasana or pendant pose, provides a powerful launch pad for more complex arm balances, and it will build the foundations of floating through from Adho Mukha svanasana (downfacing dog) into Dandasana (stick pose)

Yoga is often credited with improving core strength, and it is very effective at doing this, but core strength is far more than tight abs, and this is the key to success in Lolasana.

When we talk about core stability in yoga that will get you effortlessly into complex arm balances, we have  to include the Psoas muscles, the QL’s, the Lattimus Dorsai, the Transverse Abdominal’s and the Internal Abdominal Obliques.

Activating the shoulder stabilising muscles will provide much needed support, especially when we progress into Bakasana, where we take the whole body weight over the shoulders. Sucking the shoulder blades into the back of the rib cage, and then pulling them down will activate the Serratus anterior the Rhomboids and the Latissimus dorsi muscles.

As its yoga we also need to include the subtle body and Bandhas. Activating Mulha bandha is a key ingredient in Lolasana and other arm balances. Feeling a suction from the Perineum up into the abdominal cavity (Mulha bandha) , will initiate lift. Drawing in the belly below the navel to the back of the spine will lift the front of pelvis up (Uddiyana bandha) which will also activate the Rectus abdominals. If these actions are combined with a pushing down through the palms of the hands (Hasta bandha) we will achieve lift off!

Its now the Psoas muscles that will keep the the body curled up tight. Lifting the thighs and knees up into the chest and keeping them there is performed by the Psoas muscle.

Upper body strength plays its part and is developed in postures like Chaturanga dandasana (staff pose) Again we have to consider correct alignment because a poorly aligned staff pose will cause more problems than is solves. Keeping the elbows in tight to the trunk, and drawing them down the back, while keeping them inline with the trunk is correct alignment. Its much harder to achieve but is necessary.

All of the actions above must then be combined with the correct breath. Lifting while we inhale, and not an inhale before we lift plays its part. So often I see lots of effort, and the breath is forgotten. So it is a continued inhalation while we lift from the floor into the balance, anything else means we are holding the breath, and not breathing.

Once the technique is refined and the strength developed and we are able to lift up into Lolasana, then we practise holding the arm balance.

This workshop will cover all the techniques above plus lots of modifications for still practising.  This may include props and individual adjustments. This workshop is open to all levels.

Martin Thompson.

Yoga Dharma





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