Beginner’s Guide to Scorpion Pose

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We’ve all had that moment in a yoga class where we hear that unfamiliar Sanskrit word vrschikasana and look over to see the person to our left or right with feet resting on shoulders and a rubber band spine making its way into a circle. Simultaneously, we are mystified and motivated. We want to assume the scorpion! Here are three tools to help you find your scorpion.

  1. Strength

Shoulder strength is essential.Begin to create strong scapula muscles with dolphin pushups. Start in your dolphin pose and on an inhale, bring shoulders over wrists coming into a dolphin plank. On your exhale, press up and back to dolphin pose. Try these in sets of 10 to start and over time, move to sets of 20 and 30.

  1. Flexibility

Camel pose is a great way to open the heart and lumbar spine, two motions that are key to enabling a scorpion pose.Try holding your camel pose for 5-10 breaths. Falling back into a camel pose is an awesome step to exploring some pre-inversion trust as well.

  1. Trust

Fear is our largest barrier in our yoga practice and in the broader scope of our lives as well. Your desire to learn vrschikasana already demonstrates a piece of your fearlessness. Trust is key to any inversion practice. To build confidence, work first with headstand variations. Make your head and arms your new feet and then move to giving your forearms a try!



Yoga Poses to Ease Digestive Discomfort

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If you’re one of the many American who suffers from occasional digestive discomfort, yoga offers a natural way to get relief. Just as you would adapt your diet to address your needs, try including some of these poses into your regular practice.

Cat-Cow – Marjaryasana-Bitilasana

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  • Improves posture and balance
  • Strengthens and stretches the spine and neck
  • Stretches the hips, abdomen and bac
  • Increases coordination
  • Massages and stimulates organs in the belly, like the kidneys and adrenal glands.
  • Relieves stress and calms the mind

 

Downward-Facing Dog – Adho Mukha Svanasana

  • Calms the brain and helps relieve stress
  • Stretches the shoulders, hamstrings, calves, arches, and hands
  • Strengthens the arms and legs
  • Relieves headache, insomnia, back pain, and fatigue
  • Therapeutic for high blood pressure
  • Helps prevent osteoporosis

 

Extended Puppy Pose – Uttana Shishosana

  • Releases tension in you upper arms, shoulders, and neck
  • Expands the whole front of your chest
  • Stretches out your abdominal muscles
  • Gently stimulates your back muscles in preparation for further backbends
  • Opens up your hips and stretches your hamstrings

 

Bridge Pose – Setu Bandha Saravangasana

  • Streches your chest, neck, spine, and hips
  • Strengthens your back, buttocks, and hamstring muscles
  • Calms your brain and central nervous system
  • Alleviates stress and mild depression
  • Massages abdominal organs and improves digestion/li>
  • Relieves the symptoms of menopause
  • Reduces anxiety, backaches, headaches, and insomnia

 

Wind-Relieving Pose – Ardha Pawanmuktasana

  • Stretches the neck and back
  • Pressure on the abdomen releases any trapped gases in the large intestine
  • Blood circulation is increased to all the internal organs
  • Relieves constipation
  • Strengthens the back and abdominal muscles
  • Massages the intestines and other organs in the abdomen
  • Eases tension in the lower back
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