Baka dhyanasana ‘patient crane pose’ is also known simply as ‘crow pose’.
Squatting on the floor, place your hands on the floor with your fingers spread wide so the weight is distributed evenly and not too centered over your wrists, with your fingers pointing forward and elbows slightly bent.
Lean forward and bring the knees as high up the arms and close to the armpits as possible, slowly leaning forward to take more weight onto the arms.
Use your inhale to engage the core and lift into the final position, focusing on the tip of your nose or a point in front of you and breathing normally as you hold the pose.
You can use a block under the forehead to train the body to come into the final pose without worrying about falling flat on your face – from here you can engage the core muscles and slowly learn to raise the head up off the block slightly and hold the full expression of the pose on your own for longer and longer periods of time. Eventually you will feel comfortable enough to do the pose without the block.
This pose balances the nervous system while strengthening the arms and wrists. It helps develop a sense of physical balance and the ability to engage the core.
Avoid this pose if you suffer from high blood pressure or heart disease. If you have weak wrists or have experienced an injury in the wrists, be careful and go slowly to avoid further injuring the wrists. It would be advised to work with a professional to strengthen and heal this area before attempting arm balances.
Yoga Journal recently shared an article with 5 great tips to improve your arm balances. You can check it out here!