Salabhasana: Locust Pose
Salabhasana (sha-la-BAHS-anna) is an approachable introduction to backbends and an effective way to strengthen the muscles of the back body.
Philosophy + Origin
As a symbol of good luck and abundance in Chinese culture, harnessing the power of the grasshopper or locust encourages us to take chances and leaps of faith. Sometimes associated with astral travel, locusts symbolize the ability to overcome fear and move in the direction of positive change. Grasshoppers also use the power of sound to heal and to change states of consciousness.
- Press the tops of your feet into the ground to release pressure on the lower back.
- Block: Place a block under your forehead to keep the head elevated and reduce strain on the neck and upper back.
- Lift one leg at a time to test out how the pose feels in your body today.
- Bound locust: Interlace your hands behind your back and press your knuckles toward the back of your mat.
- Grounded locust: Keep your hands on the ground for a kind variation for your shoulders.
- Begin lying on your stomach with your arms extended down by your sides, palms facing up. Allow your forehead to rest naturally on the floor. Press your tailbone toward the ground.
- On an inhale, lift your head, chest, and arms off the floor.
- On an exhale, lift your legs off the ground.
- Gaze down, so the front and back of your neck are the same length. Roll your shoulder blades onto your back. reach back through your fingertips and toes.
- Feel your inner thighs lift your legs off the ground. Drop your tailbone toward the ground (it will try to lift up).
- Hold for up to 10 breaths, then release to belly-down savasana.
- Cobra pose | Bhujangasana
- Half standing forward bend | Ardha uttanasana
- Upward facing dog | Urdhva mukha svanasana
- Sphinx | Salamba bhujangasana
- Resting half floor frog | Vishraam ardha bhekasana
- Salabha = Locust, grasshopper
- Asana = Pose
- Strengthens muscles of the back, arms, and legs.
- Stretches muscles of the chest, shoulders, and abdomen.
- Counters tech posture.
- Increases the flow of energy in the body.
- Helps overcome negative thought patterns and obstacles.
Phalakasana: Plank Pose
Phalakasana (fall-ack-AHS-anna), is an essential posture for a strong yoga practice. Holding plank pose will improve your endurance and muscle tone, help develop the strength needed for more complex poses, and generate heat and stimulating the navel chakra.
Philosophy + Origin
Hidden in the pose’s name is the Sanskrit word “phala,” which means to bear fruit or ripen. In yoga, the idea of tapas, often translated as “heat,” “passion,” or “discipline,” fuels the physical asana practice, encouraging students to seek out the challenge again and again in order to become stronger, to build an internal flame in the body that fuels every aspect of life. When you think of plank pose as an opportunity to “ripen” or “bear fruit,” you become aware of the transformative effect of this seemingly simple (although challenging) pose. Each time you enter the pose, use the breath to ripen the fruit of your labors. The ability to hold this pose with steadiness and grace is known to create major shifts in your practice and your life.