Forearm Balance Tips and Tricks
One of the most challenging things as a mother is to stay present in every moment and enjoy each stage of childhood. There is never a perfect balance as a mom; and we need to feel good about just doing our best. Going upside down is one of the most exhilarating parts of the yoga practice, it makes us feel young at heart and helps us stay present. There will be some days it feels easy to stick an inversion, and other days you may fall out of it a few times. Balancing on our hands is a tricky balance just like motherhood.
Inversions help bring blood flow to the brain and increase our energy. I always feel giddy after kicking my feet over my head in handstands, headstands and forearm balance.
A forearm balance is the perfect inversion for beginner’s to start practicing. Forearm balance insures you can do a headstand safely (you’ve developed the upper body strength needed), gives you confidence, strengthens your core and upper body, and teaches you how to find your center once you’re upside down.
Forearm balance is easier than it looks; but it’s also so eye-catching, so you can show it off to all of your friends!
Steps to the perfect forearm balance
First start with a strong core, do a variety of yoga sit ups and leg raises to engage your core and practice holding plank for several seconds a day.
Come in to a forearm dog and walk your feet in closer to your hands. Lift one leg up in the air as high as you can then donkey kick the opposite foot up as if you’re trying to kick your heel to your butt. Practice the donkey kicks 5 on each side.
Start doing this daily and eventually you will kick right up into forearm balance. Make sure to look forward on the floor slightly and engage your abs to lengthen out of your back. Press firmly in to your lower arms and make sure the elbows don’t stray out to the sides.
You can begin at a wall. Once you find the wall with your legs work on shifting away from it. Then, you can get comfortable holding the balance in the center of the room. One great trick, is to loop a strap around your upper arms the width of your shoulders. You can push out against the strap and engage your lats to help you balance. You can also place a block between your hands with the thumb and forefinger spreading around it.
Don’t be afraid to move forward in to the arms (you can always sommersault out of it if you fall). You need to make sure you get your hips over your shoulders to really engage your core. With a little diligence and patience, you’ll be kicking up and staying before you know it.
Keep trying these tips as often as you can. You can also practice dolphin pose by pressing your forearms in to the floor and moving forward and back from forearm plank to forearm dog. Good luck with this balance! Let me know how it’s going in the comment section below.
Kristin McGee is a celebrity yoga and Pilates instructor in New York City. She is the star of over 100 videos, a contributing editor at Health Magazine and a spokeswoman for many brands and causes she believes in. Kristin also appears frequently on television. A proud mom to three, she sure keeps herself busy!