chin stand

Yoga Poses

Chin Stand Ganda Bherudasana

Steps

Chin Stand is the rock star of yoga poses. Similar to elbow stand, chin stand combines an inversion with a backbend. This is an advanced pose, that requires a strong and flexible back. Suggested preparatory poses include chin-chest-knees, camel and bow.

To enter the pose, begin in Downward facing Dog. Roll forward to plank. Bend the elbows and roll forward to chin-chest-knees. The chin, shoulders and chest should be in contact with the mat.  Curl the toes of the left and grip the mat. Lift the right leg upwards. Bend the left leg up and support the right leg with left foot, pushing it higher.  When ready, lift the left leg to meet the right. Stretch legs upward, rotating the inner thighs towards each other and squeeze. To exit the pose, reverse the steps. Release left knee to floor and rest the leg on top, before lowering right knee to floor.  Push back to Downward Facing Dog or child pose.

Teacher Queues

Visualization Comments

Practice this pose to express openness. Imagine the palms and chest held to the mat with sticky tape. The back is relaxed and supple, the legs energised as the toes reaching up towards the light.

Technical Comments

From chin-chest-knees, check palms are flat to mat and in line with sides of chest. The chin should be touching the ground, but the weight of the body will be held by hands and breast plate. The back should be arched, toes pointing upward.

Benefit Comments

  • Strengthens back, hips, pelvis and legs
  • Stretches and tones spinal nerves
  • Improves flexibility of back
  • Improves balance

Watch Out For:

  • Pressure on chin/compression of neck
  • Flaying legs and elbows
  • Hands in front of shoulders

Contraindications

  • Back injuries
  • Neck issues
  • Heart conditions
  • High blood pressure
  • Cervical spondylitis
  • Ulcer, hernia, intestinal disorders

Modifications

  • Place block under chest.
  • Place blocks under shoulders.
  • Practice near to a wall, walk feet up the wall to raise legs.

Variations

  • Lift chest and chin off mat.
  • Lower feet onto back of head.

Yoga Counter Poses

  • Downward facing dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)
  • Child pose (Balasana)
  • Seated forward bend (Paschimothanasana)
  • Standing forward bend (Uttanasana)

Written By: Brenda Hamlet

Brenda Hamlet is a RYT 200 yoga teacher and journalist. More information about Brenda can be found at https://www.facebook.com/brendahamletyoga

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