In this article, we are going to look at four basic poses that every student should know. These poses will help you practice good alignment in yoga. But, before we start, let’s should spend a bit of time thinking about why good alignment is important.
Why Good Alignment in Yoga Is Important.
There are two important reasons to practice good alignment. The first is that as we move our bodies, we use alignment as a way to keep control of what our bodies are doing. Alignment keeps our bodies from harm. Secondly, we use alignment in yoga, not so much as a way of making out posture good, although that is important. We practice good alignment because it helps to create an anchor for the mind. This helps us go beyond the day-to-day things that cause worry or stress in our lives. In other words, good alignment in yoga keeps our body safe, so it is not flopping around while we are practicing. Good alignment also keeps our minds focused. This in turn stops us wandering off, thinking about things that are not important at that moment in time.
Tips to Practise Good Alignment in Yoga
Good alignment in yoga is important but correct alignment for the body is more important. Everyone has a different body. So, use the following tips as guidelines rather than rules that have to be strictly adhered to. Let’s go through some of poses which will help us practice good alignment in yoga. The five types of poses we are going to look at are:
Downward Facing Dog (Standing)
The first pose we are going to look at is the downward facing dog, which is one of the most well-known yoga poses. Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean it is easy.
When you practise this pose, make sure you don’t lean too far forward. Keep your hips high with your heels on the floor if possible.
If your hamstrings are tight, feel free to bend your knees a little to help you find a comfortable position.
Downward Facing Dog Split (Balancing)
This pose is one of the best for introducing balancing as it is an extension of a pose you will have already learned.
The important thing to remember is that you don’t need to raise your leg high. That’s especially true when you are first starting out.
The important thing is to make sure that your hips do not change position. Where your hips are when you are in downward facing dog should be the same when you are doing the split.
Easy Pose (Sitting)
This cross-legged pose is one of the most basic poses used in yoga. But it can be a little uncomfortable, especially for beginners. If that is the case for you, use a prop to help, such as a yoga block.
Easy Pose stretches and strengthens the knees and back respectively. Make sure your shoulders are aligned with your hips. Make sure not to slouch or allow your chin to go too far forward.
It is also a great pose for de-stressing after a difficult day. For that reason, it is often used for meditation and breathing exercises.
Happy Baby Pose (Supine)
Happy baby is a terrific final pose for any yoga session. Lying on your back with your knees bent to your chest, while holding the soles of your feet, is very relaxing.
Be careful not to overdo it. Your feet should start to come towards your armpits, but your tailbone should lift off the floor.
The important thing in this pose, as in many poses in yoga, is to find a happy medium between effort and relaxation.