Crow & Crane Pose: Kakasana & Bakasana
Crow & Crane pose
I have to admit this is one of the 1st poses I fell in love with in my yoga practice. And when I say fell I mean face first, ouch! This pose was and still is a challenge and I love it.
There are many variations and modifications for this popular pose or asana. Most commonly we see crow pose taught in studios across the US. But crane and the side crow variations are also quite popular.
How to get there…
Find physical and mental balance while you strengthen your arms, shoulders, thighs, and abs. Start in a deep squat pose. Slide your knees in your armpits or on the back of your biceps and try to keep them tucked in and aligned with your arms. Attempt to keep your knees from going too wide. This can make it harder to balance. Tilt your weight forward to sense where your center of gravity is. Play with your balance by rocking back and forth. Try perching on a block for a very realistic feel for this pose then lift a toe or all ten when you’re ready to fly! Check out the videos below where we explain further…
Use a block to start!
- Using a block to perch on is a great way to feel the pose with less risk of losing balance.
- Place your hands on the floor just like you do in low push up.
- Shift your weight up, a little forward, pull your heals towards your glutes and take flight!
Crane Pose Variation
- Find your normal crow pose.
- Once in crow pose, straighten your arms. You will move forward slightly. Keep your knees tucked and your abdominal muscles engaged!
Side Crow Variation
- Start in a chair twist.
- Pick a side and slowly place your hands down on that side like you would for low push up.
- Place the bend of your knee on your front elbow and your hip on your back elbow. Alternatively you can just use the knee and elbow connection for the single arm version of the posture.
- Once your limbs are in place, “tilt the teapot” and try to balance on your side.
- Watch our side crow video and learn more tips!
Tips from our teaching staff
I LOVE teaching crow pose in my basics class! I feel like it’s such a good pose to start building confidence in arm balances/inversions and learning how to trust yourself! I think it requires a special kind of awareness to mind, body and breath — the slightest adjustment of any three can make or break you in the pose.
I love teaching crow using a block. It gives a little more height to find the right placement for your knees and feel the strength in your arms. Best place to start is trying one foot off and then alternating. When they are ready to try both feet, they still have the block there to come down on. A blanket in front of them is helpful with fear of falling forward. It’s one of my favorite poses to teach and a great pose that will give them confidence to try other arm balances!
My fave “crow” story is the student that approached me after a successful crow saying she was helped in flight by my cue “look out, not down” and it was the anniversary of a breakup. So she felt the figurative advice helped her— in reality, of course, I was being quite literal. To look out and not down, physically, to avoid a nosedive. What a great “off the mat” thing tho, to hear those cues two ways!!
Next time you are on your mat, play around with these alignment tips and find what works best for you.
Join us for a class online or in-studio! Namaste.
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