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Locust Yoga Pose – Shalabhasana

Locust Pose or Shalabhasana

Shalabhasana

[sha-la-BAHS-anna]

Shalabhasana means locust. This posture resembles a locust eating with its head down and its tail up. Locusts are known for their power, energy, and ability to take great leaps.

Benefits of Locust Pose

  • Massages the internal organs, aiding digestion and elimination.
  • Stretches the muscles on the front side of the body, releasing physical tension.
  • Opens the endocrine system.

Contraindications

  • People suffering from high blood pressure or heart disease may need to avoid this pose.
  • Stroke victims may also need to avoid this asana — anything that increases pressure in the neck and head could be problematic.
  • Prenatal students should avoid lying in a prone position.

Step-by-Step

  • Lie prone on your stomach. Breathe into your belly. Notice the connection between the front side of your body and the earth.
  • Bring your arms out to the sides of your body at about a 45° angle.
  • Lift your arms, shoulders, head, and legs on an inhale and lower on an exhale.
  • Start at the top of the cervical spine to lift your head, neck, shoulders and chest.
  • When lifting the lower back, start at the tailbone and move from the base to the middle.
  • Lengthen the crown of your head away from your toes.
  • Pressing the pubic bone and hip flexors down into the mat.
  • Ensure that your neck stays long and does not bend too much. The neck should merely complete the arc of the rest of the spine.
  • Ensure that the sacrum stays wide and does not hold too much tension as you extend the spine.
  • Feel your heart lifting on each inhale.
  • Enjoy a sense of expansion on all sides of your body.

Preparatory Poses

Counter Poses

locust pose variation