~ Crane Pose
1. It’s fundamental principles
Balancing and strengthening asanas support students to find balance on a physical,
mental and subtle level. These asanas develop lightness, build stamina, strength,
enhance co-ordination (class notes, 2004) and begin to still the unconscious
movements of the physical body, mind and energetic body.
2. The structural and functional physiology involved
Bakasana or Crane Pose:
Strengthens the arms and wrists
Develops a sense of physical balance as this asana requires more co-ordination
than strength (Saraswati, 1996)
Stretches the upper back
Engages the abdominal muscles
Tones the abdominal organs
Opens and improves flexibility in the groin
And an understanding of how to do bakasana prepares the student for most
other arm balances.
(www.yogajournal.com: Bakasana, 2004; Saraswati, 1996)
3. The yogic or subtle physiology involved
Improves mental clarity, focus and concentration
Balance requires a solid/firm foundation – “Tadasana hands” so this
asana can strengthen Muladhara chakra. However, I find this asana also requires me
to lift my energy up to higher energy centres: In particular Ajna - for focus,
concentration and mental clarity.
As the student begins to balance the body in space, and begins to find
the balance in the comfort, ease and action required during asana practise, this sense
of balance begins to be felt through the more subtle layers of the body. And so
balance is found through each of the koshas (refer previous asana assignments for
4. How it relates to other asanas in the group
Bakasana is both a balancing and a strengthening asana. It requires the concentration
and co-ordination typically connecting with balancing asanas, whilst simultaneously
being a compact arm balance (www.yogajournal.com: Bakasana, 2004).
5. How it may be sequenced in a practise/class?
I’ve only ever practised this asana later on, once I’ve worked through other