Purvottanasana (with brick)
(‘that which goes before you’/front body or eastern body/intense stretch)
This pose strengthens the core body and opens the chest.
- Have your legs extended out in front of you with your heels an inch or two away from a yoga brick.
- Place your hands six to eight inches back from your buttocks with your fingers pointing towards you feet.
- On an inhalation, raise your pelvis, keeping your legs straight. Allow your toes to point up still.
- Draw the upper back in and pull the chest over the back body’s supportive inwards* movement.
- Let the head follow the movement of the chest and upper back, drawing in the back and extending the front.
- Stay on the heels and allow the balls of the feet to ‘wander’ towards the brick.
- When the balls of the feet make contact with the brick, drive the upper back in deeper and pull the chest forwards away from the brick.
- Stay while you can maintain focus without force, then come down and rest.
- When the pose can be practised comfortably, the block can be dispensed with as shown.
*internalising, drawing deeper away from the skin