Anatomy of a Crow Pose

By Erinn Lewis, co-owner and instructor at Sukha Yoga – July 1, 2015
Photography by Brian Fitzsimmons

To Start: Warm the body up with a few rounds of Sun Salutations. Wiggle out your wrists. Keep your breath full and steady. 

New to Crow:

1. Place a block under you like a little perch. Step on to the block. 

2. Spread your toes, press through the mounds of your feet and lift your heels. 

3. Split your knees wide and stretch your upper body forward and down. 

4. Lengthen your arms, placing your wrists as wide or a little wider than shoulder distance apart on your mat. Fan out through your fingers and release your skull. Breathe a few slow, deep breaths here.  

5. Slide your arm into your inner upper thighs. Suction your arms and your legs against each other.  

6. Bend into the elbows, stay lifted on the toes, and split your knees, positioning them as high on the triceps (upper arms) as possible. Think about taking the knees all the way up to the armpits. Set and soften the gaze forward. 

7. Transfer your weight and squeeze into the midline, pulling the pit of your belly in and up. 

8. Lift one foot and squeeze the heel toward your butt. If you feel stable, lift the other foot off the block. Or alternate lifting each foot until you’re ready to take flight.


Advanced Crow 

(Tripod Headstand Transition, shown in the photo below)  

From Crow Pose, keep your breath full and steady and your upper body open and receptive. Breathe into the back of your lungs and heart. 

With your hips floating high in the air, find the balance between your hands as they press into the earth. 

Shift your weight forward, slowly lowering the crown of your head to the earth.

Release your shoulders away from your ears and broaden your collarbones.

Bring your knees off your upper arms by squeezing them to the midline of your body. Continue to hug the knees in and keep the pit of your belly engaged. 

Draw in from your arms energetically to the top of your head and keep your elbows stacked with your wrists. 

Lift your legs into an upside down chair and move your hips away from your feet to float above your shoulders. 

Extend your legs up, spread your toes and the balls of your feet to the sky. Continue to keep your legs strong and your mind relaxed. 

Smile—its good medicine to shift perspective. Enjoy the float and flight!

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