Monday, June 9, 2014

New uses for your couch

 I love couches.  They are so comfortable, welcoming, and accommodating to my relatively short legs.  I even love Anantasana, which is sometimes translated to "Vishnu's couch".  So, it only makes sense that I would use my couches for yoga props.  In fact, even before I owned a single blanket, I was backbending over my couch.

When you are staying with a friend, and you've foolishly left all your yoga props at home,  you can still get many poses in by using their couch.

A nice way to start your couch practice is with some standing poses.  Here the couch arm is keeping my thigh back and the pillows are giving me support.

Next a supported Sirsasana.  I really needed another cushion under my thighs for the length of my torso to fully hang.  While this version of Sirsasana is really enjoyable, the disadvantage is you can see how dirty your floor is underneath your couch. 

Side note: do not do this off the back of the couch, couches are not stable that way.

The backbends really are great on the couch.  Some couches have nice rounded arms that give wonderful support for the back, somewhat similar to a backbender (a very expensive but enjoyable yoga prop).

If you can't do padmasana, not to worry, this pose is lovely with the legs straight as well.

Couches are reassuringly soft and are great props to use when you attempt dropbacks.

To round off your practice, it's nice to end with a supported shoulderstand / viparita karani hybrid.  Take one cushion off the couch and place it under your shoulders.  My couches were just high enough off the ground to wedge the cushion under - perfect support and I could move the cushion in or out.

Backbender is behind this squishy sarvangasana set up.

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