Snake Pose - Information
This is a posture I discovered when I came across Shadow Yoga and was also familiar with the position when I trained in Tai Chi. It is a beautiful opening position for the hips and has an earthy grace about it.
You can add this nicely into a yoga flow sequence also. It follows an open legged forward fold very well and can come before a Warrior Sequence. I have even been known to add this into a sun salutation variation. I am not a purist.
This is level 2 pose and suitable for those who have already begun to work on hip-openers. Please be mindful if you are hyper-mobile (double-jointed) as you may have a tendency to sit almost to the floor and this may over-strain the muscles and surrounding tissue. If in doubt then seek the advice of a professional yoga teacher.
The snake pose opens the hips, strengthens the legs and improves core awareness. The arms can be placed in Nasakara Mudra instead of extended as in the shown image, if you prefer. (Namaskara Mudra is just placing the hands in a prayer position infront of the heart space or centre of the chest). The important thing, whatever you do with the arms is that you keep the shoulders free from tension.
Snake Pose is an empowering posture, yet as always, listen to your body and only move within a range of movement which feels right for you, at any time. This is truly one of my favorite postures.
Snake Pose - Instructions Step by Step
Take a wide stance and turn the feet slightly out. The foot position will likely change once you begin to move into the lunge. Keep the shoulders soft and take a deep inhale.
On the exhale, bend into one knee. Adjust the footing if needed. Relax the hips closer to the earth and continue to breath comfortably.
Tilt the upper body forwards from the pelvis. This is a hinging movement, not a curling of the spine. Keep a slight hold in the core muscles to protect the lower back.
Have the hands in Namaskara Mudra, as mentioned earlier or extend the arms, with one gliding down the lower leg like a snake, with the hand pressing away, and the other raising up, with a loose wrist so that the fingers are facing the ground. Look down beyond the lower hand. Be here as long as is comfortable.
- Back Opener
- Hamstring Stretch
- Knee Strengthener
- Wrist Stretch and Release
- Improves Blood Flow (especially around the hips and legs)
- Improves Digestion
- Improves Stamina
- Releases neck tension
- Core Stability
It is not advisable to try this pose if you have serious hip or knee concerns.