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Locust Pose - Practical Yoga Applications

alignment health real life yoga postures yoga practice Oct 07, 2020

Watch this video for a look at locust pose to support your sitting posture.

Don't we often find ourselves sitting slumped using our arm or hand to prop us up when at a desk or table? This is quite an external body support.

In this video, we’ll take the first step and focus on the muscles along the spine in the back, often collectively called the erector spinae muscle group.
One pose that really addresses these muscles, is the locust pose, or salabasana.
To really get to the bottom of this, we would need to look at many different factors coming together. The many different muscle groups and postural support ideas.

In locust pose, or salabasana, we lie on our belly and lift both the torso and the legs up against gravity.
The active muscles for lifting up are along the back side of the body. Since muscles only pull, and do not push, we can imagine ourselves a little bit like string puppets. The strings on the back of the torso or spine and on the back of the legs need to pull to lift up those body parts.

When practicing locust pose we can easily feel how this strengthens the back muscles. Stronger back muscles are one component of support for our spine and better posture.
It becomes quite clear too that our arm position is actually secondary to the performance of this pose. The higher and further forward we lift the arms, the more challenging this pose becomes to the muscles oaf the back. But even without the arms, the pose is engaging the same back of the body muscles we are looking for here.

There is one thing to be alert to. Lifting just straight tup can lead to compression in vulnerable areas such as the lower back and sacro-iliac joint. What we can do about this is to engage the torso and legs for length first.
This means we extend through the feet and the crown of the head lengthwise just before and while we move into the locust pose.

The actions of lifting the spine, both lengthwise and up, are a big part of a healthy work and sitting posture.
Let me know your favourite points in your practice at which you like to do the locust pose.

Check out the courses on the Spine and the Pelvis to get into more detail and background for your back and posture.

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