BEAUTIES, BLOCKS AND BALANCE-A UNIQUE WAY TO USE THE YOGA BLOCK!

If you follow my blog, you already have seen Diane’s recent ‘Block Blog’ (see post on November 30, 2012, My First Guest Blogger: Diane – Yoga Block Guru). I would like to expand on that and share a few more interesting and unique ways on using the yoga block!

In the following demonstrations, the block is used as a balancing tool to create awareness for proper alignment on arms and legs in some common standing poses. Even though the yoga block weighs next to nothing, balancing the block on these parts of the body requires focus, concentration and steadiness and it challenges the muscle to build strength.

The following are areas of alignment the balancing block can help with:

– Creating and keeping a right angel bend to the knee
– Creating and keeping a parallel thigh position when knee is bent
– Creating and keeping a straight knee/leg position
– Maintaining level hips and sacrum
– Creating and keeping a balanced inward and outward rotation of the thigh when leg is fully
extended
– Creating and keeping full extension of the arms

Helpful hints:
– Supply four blocks per student
– Since it can be challenging to balance your own block when in the pose, have students pair off in twos with one student doing the pose and the other placing the blocks on the respective body parts

With the help of two Yoga Beauties, Angie and Robin, I put together the following to help demonstrate the use of the balancing block:

WARRIOR II

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20130111-172809.jpgUsing the blocks helps to create the parallel thigh in Warrior II which will allow the block to balance. The blocks balancing on the arms encourage full arm straightening and raised fingertips.

HALF MOON POSE

20130111-173215.jpgBalancing the block on the top hip requires parallel /stacked hips and flat sacrum. The block placed at the ankle reinforces the straight leg, flexed foot position.

HALF SPLITS POSE

20130111-173648.jpgIn order for the block to stay balanced on the hamstring, the inward and outward rotation of the top thigh must be balanced and a flat sacrum maintained.

LUNGE POSE

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Balancing the block on the upper thigh teaches the student to create and keep a right angle bend to the front knee as well as a parallel thigh which requires the knee to track toward the pinky-toe side of the foot.

Photos by Greg-The Forever Yogi

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5 Responses

  1. Angela and Robin I love your
    form in these poses. You ladies
    make it look so natural and easy!
    One of these days I will try
    some of those poses with blocks.
    However for now I’m happy just
    taking the photos 🙂 !

  2. You’re up next Greg! Robin and I will take the photos of you and Cathy 🙂

    Thanks for including us Cathy. The blocks were definitely a challenge and help my practice. Balancing the blocks causes me to focus more inwardly, breathe, and shut out any outside noise.

  3. Yeaaah Right ! lol

  4. Thanks Greg! You did an awesome job with the photos. I agree with Angie, she and I would love to get behind the camera next time 🙂
    Balancing the blocks is very challenging, I like how they force me to keep my muscles engaged in each pose, and my mind focused on posture and breathing.
    I really enjoyed using them!

  5. What beautiful photos, the poses look great. The use of the blocks to make sure of form is such a great idea. Thanks for demonstrating this.

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