19. Bow Pose
The last of the of spine strengthening series postures works on the entire spine. Lying on the belly, bend the knees, reach back and grab the outside of each foot, two inches below the toes.
Keep the knees and feet as close together as possible and make sure that the wrists have not twisted downwards. If the set up of Bow Pose alone is uncomfortable for you, remember, be patient!
Inhale deeply to simultaneously kick back into the hands, lifting the thighs and upper body off the floor. For more strength, push the hips and pelvis into the floor before lifting the legs up and back.
Release the shoulders back as the torso keeps lifting and roll the body weight forward to balance on the center of the abdomen.
Use inner thigh strength to make sure the knees don’t splay out too wide – keep the knees and feet six inches apart. If needed, refrain from kicking the legs up too high.
Hold for 20 seconds, 80-20 breathing. Slowly lower the torso and legs to the floor, Savasana.
- Revitalizes all spinal nerves by increasing circulation to the entire spine
- Strengthens the entire spine, resulting in relief from back aches
- Strengthens abdominal muscles
- Strengthens upper arms, thighs and hips
- Stretches hip flexors and psoas muscle
- Improves digestion
- Massages abdomen – improves functioning of the large and small intestines, liver, kidneys and spleen
- Improves the flexibility of the scapula, latisimus, deltoid and trapezius muscles
- Increases oxygen intake by opening the rib cage, enabling maximum expansion of lungs.