Mistakes to avoid

This is an asana that is often done incorrectly. Take care to avoid the following mistakes:

• Tensing the back in order to raise the body into the final pose. Only use the leg muscles and let the back be passively bent backwards. This is a little difficult for many people, but with practice it will become easier.

• Holding the feet instead ofthe ankles. Make sure that your hands wrap around the region of the ankles, not the feet.

• Separating the feet. Keep the feet together so that the big toes remain in contact throughout the entire practice. Beginners will find it easier to keep the knees apart. If you wish you can try to bring them closer together while in the final pose. This will intensify the effect of the asana.

• Resting the weight of the body on the ribs instead of the soft part of the abdomen in the final pose. Adjust the balance of your body so that the belly lies in contact with the floor. This is easily done by adjusting the height of the head, by either tensing or relaxing the leg muscles, accordingly.

• Bending the arms. Keep the arms straight throughout the entire practice.

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