In this video Michelle shares a few easy tips to make your cobra pose (Bhujangasana) more comfortable, including guidance on how to come into cobra safely and common mistakes she sees people make in class that can easily be avoided.
How to come into cobra pose
To come into cobra pose first come to lay with your belly on the ground. Bring your forehead to the ground and your hands to the ground next to your chest. Deeply exhale. On your inhale lift your head and chest off the ground. You can keep your elbows as bent as you need to. Look straight ahead until your become more comfortable in the posture.
What to try and avoid when coming into cobra
When coming into the posture, try and keep your shoulders relaxed and away from your ears to avoid crunching in your neck.
Make sure you're pressing your whole hands down to avoid wrist pain.
If you're currently suffering from back pain or the posture is uncomfortable, try an alternative posture. You should never stay in a posture that causes you pain.
Alternative postures for cobra if you have wrist pain / lower back pain
If you have wrist pain that makes putting weight in your hands to come up into cobra pose (and stay there) difficult or uncomfortable it's better to practice an alternative posture until your wrists are healed.
Likewise, if you're suffering from lower back pain that could be stimulated while in cobra pose it is better to avoid the posture in favour of it's alternative until you can come into the posture pain free.
Sphinx pose (Salamba Bhujangasana) is also a useful alternative for those who find it generally difficult to come into cobra pose
Remember that these are general outlines and that there is no one-size fits all to any posture. The best way to practice safely is to practice with a teacher!
Michellé D'Almeida is a yoga teacher and student of Ayurveda Yoga Academy with 5 years of teaching experience. She is also Founder of Ayurveda Yoga Africa and co-founder of Ayurveda Yoga Africa's Online branch: Yoga Together Online.