Here you can get information about How to Use a Yoga Block. Yoga blocks are a brick shaped prop that helps enhance your yoga practice. Sometimes these tools are misunderstood — while they’re often used by novices and people with limited flexibility.
They’re used by many practitioners in the least levels for reducing strain, deeper relaxation, or modifying a pose for one’s particular body. Whether your new yoga or have years of experience, using a block helps with balance, posture, and intensifying stretches. Try using the block with different poses to seek out your best fit!
Supported Chest Opener
This potent chest opener, a variation of Fish Pose (Matsyasana), counters slumped posture by releasing tension within the musculus pectoralis major and minor muscles within the chest. It exposes space for deeper breathing, making it an honest position for expansive pranayama practices. It’s also a helpful start to a heart-opening practice, or a soothing finish to balance a practice involving tons of chest and shoulder strength.
How the blocks help
The framework provided by the blocks allows us to relax completely, encouraging stubborn postural tension to dissolve from the muscles pectoralis major and minor muscles. This enables for thoracic spine extension, giving us deeper home in heart-openers like Bow Pose (Dhanurasana), Lord of the Dance Pose (Natarajasana), and Camel Pose (Ustrasana).
You’ll need two yoga blocks; foam blocks could also be easier than wooden or cork blocks, but you’ll pad firmer blocks with a layer of yoga mat or blanket. Arrange the blocks during a rough T-shape. You’ll have one on its middle height, running up your spine from the bottom of your ribcage to the space between your shoulder blades; the opposite is on its highest setting parallel to the short end of your mat to carry the bottom of your skull. Take some time getting the set-up good, in order that you’ll relax completely.
Make sure you don’t feel any pressure in your lower back; lengthen your tail or bend your knees if you are doing. Once you’re comfortable, allow your head to rest completely on the upper block, softening tension out of your neck. Find a cushy position for your arms, either draped by your sides or opened out wide. Then notice how the lower block lifts and flares your rib cage, while encouraging your upper arm bones to drape toward the ground to broaden your chest. Stay for a moment or two, inviting your breath to fill the space you’ve created.
Kneeling Heart-Opener Puppy Pose (Anahatasana) may be a lovely thanks to open your chest, lengthen your latissimus dorsi and posterior deltoid, and (if you bend your elbows) stretch your triceps. Outside of yoga practice, we rarely take our arms overhead, meaning these muscles can become tight enough to limit our range of motion.
How the blocks help: Adding blocks under your elbows makes the stretch even juicier, creating space for your chest to melt below the peak of your arms. It’s also a helpful warm-up for poses with overhead arms, including Handstand (Adho Mukha Vrksasana) and Wheel Pose (Urdhva Dhanurasana). This variation also can be a satisfying counter to poses that need latissimus dorsi and tricep strength, like Upward Plank Pose (Purvottanasana).
You’ll need two blocks, and again, soft foam blocks will feel easier than hard wooden ones. Start on high-low-jack together with your blocks on their middle height, found outside by side parallel to the short fringe of your mat. Place one elbow within the middle of every block, adjusting block position if required to make sure your upper arms are shoulder-width apart. Then walk your knees back until your chest melts down between your biceps and your hips are set just behind your knees. Roll your upper arm bones faraway from your ears in order that the edges of your neck soften, and permit your head to hold heavy. Then bend your elbows, bring your palms together, and draw your thumbs toward the rear of your neck. Feel a stretch over your side ribs and down the backs of your upper arms. Lean into the stretch for a minimum of five slow breaths before pressing down into your elbows to rise, copy to all or any fours.
While not a standard yoga practice, yoga bicycles appear in modern vinyasa classes as a fast pathway to a robust rectus abdominis, oblique abdominals, and hip flexors.
How the block helps: This variation adds strength work for the adductors on the inner thighs, and therefore the pectoralis muscles on the chest. Keeping the block in situ also boosts focus and coordination between upper and lower body. It’s a helpful warm-up for practices themed around balance, twists, or maybe back bends.
Lie on your back together with your knees bent in toward your chest, cradling your head in one hand and holding a block within the other. Tuck one end of the block between your knees, then lift your head, drawing your bent elbows in to squeeze the opposite end of the block. Scoop your belly to press your low back onto the mat, using an exhalation to lift both your sacrum and your shoulder blades.
Hold the block in situ together with your left knee and right elbow, slowly extending your right leg bent to hover above the mat and twisting your torso to open your left elbow out wide. Inhale here, and as you exhale, draw the extended leg and elbow back in to hug the block in situ. Inhale as you extend the left leg out and twist your torso to the proper, then exhale to hug back in to center. Swap smoothly from side to side together with your breath, maintaining the inward pressure on the block to stop it from falling. Aim for eight to 10 rounds in all sides before releasing the block and resting.
Sun Salutation (Surya Namaskar) A
Refresh this familiar sequence by highlighting the adductor muscles that run down the inner thighs. The adductors draw our thigh-bones toward one another, and work with our deep core and gluteus muscles on the outer to help create standing stability. However, they’re sometimes neglected in favor of our better-known thigh muscles, the quadriceps and hamstrings.
How the block helps: Holding a block between your thighs as you flow through Sun Salutations will assist you vividly feel the support and stability you’ll gain by accessing the adductors, especially within the challenging transitions.
Substitute Mountain Pose (Tadasana) and place a block on its narrowest setting between your thighs, with any excess block length behind your thighs instead of ahead of them. Throughout the Sun Salutation, you’ll get to space your feet far enough apart that you simply can hug your thighs in to carry the block in situ without feeling strain through your knees. Inhale to succeed in your arms overhead, and exhale to hinge into a Standing Forward Bend (Uttanasana), keeping the block snugly in situ. Inhale to a Standing Half Forward Bend (Ardha Uttanasana), feeling a subtle movement of the block toward the rear of your mat as your inner thighs spiral toward one another.
Exhale to plant your palms and float back to Chaturanga Dandasana, noticing how your grip on the block makes your legs feel stronger and lighter. Inhale into Upward-Facing Dog (Urdhva Mukha Svanasana) or Cobra (Bhujangasana), feeling the subtle spiral of the inner thighs faraway from the ground. Exhale to press up and back to Downward-Facing Dog. After your exhalation, bend your knees and float forward, using the inward and upward pull of your inner thighs to assist you lift from the pelvis, instead of jumping heavily from the feet. Inhale to seek out a halfway lift, and exhale to fold forward. Inhale, driving down through your feet to hinge up to standing with arms overhead, and exhale to return to Tadasana. Repeat two to 3 more Sun Salutations with the block in situ, noticing poses or transitions where you tend to lose your awareness of the adductor muscles, then try another without the block to ascertain if you’ll keep the habit of engaging those key muscles without the prop in situ.
Setu Bandhasana (Bridge Pose)
Bridge Pose is employed to strengthen the backside of the body and to open the front side. It also can be a restorative posture with the utilization of yoga blocks.
How to Use Yoga Blocks in Setu Bandhasana:
For more accessibility: With the soles of your feet on the mat, place any appropriate height of your block underneath your sacrum and rest your weight onto the block
To deepen the posture:
- With the block under your sacrum, perhaps adjust the block’s height, then slowly straighten one leg at a time. You’ll bring one knee into your chest, deepening the posture even more
- Place a block in between your thighs during a standard Bridge Pose, engaging the legs to carry the block in situ then try hip raises with the block here
Anjaneyasana (Crescent Lunge)
It’s true: “Issues sleep in our tissues.” Crescent Lunge will assist you release these issues by that specialize in the hip flexors. If you are doing tons of sitting, try implementing Crescent Lunge or Low Lunge into your daily practice, albeit it’s the sole posture you are doing every day.
How to Use Yoga Blocks in Anjaneyasana:
For more accessibility:
- Use a block underneath each hand to support your torso with both legs lifted and powerful
- Place a foam block underneath your back knee as you release your back knee toward the ground
To deepen the posture:
- Place a block underneath your front foot in Crescent Lunge or Low Lunge
Utthita Trikonasana (Triangle Pose)
Triangle Pose has numerous benefits, but are often challenging for anyone who suffers from back pain or has limited mobility.
How to Use Yoga Blocks in Utthita Trikonasana:
For more accessibility:
- Place a block underneath your lower hand for added support
To deepen the posture:
- Place a block between your hands and squeeze the block while taking your biceps to your ears for an Unsupported Triangle
- When practicing yoga, avoid poses that hurt your body. Remember of how your body feels and talk with a specialist like a doctor or yoga instructor about your questions or concerns