This hybrid pose, Baby Crow pose or Bala Kakasana, tones the core, strengthens the shoulders and arms, and helps build balance and focus. Pose is especially good if the wrists are bothering you!
Arm balance postures can be a fun and exciting part of practice. I, myself, love Crow Pose. This was the first arm balance that I was able to fly, so it has a special place in my heart. However, one of my favorite variations to teach is the Crow Pose on the forearms – a.k.a. Baby crow (Bala Bakasana).
When it comes to Baby Crow Pose practice my best tips would be.
- Use props: They’re there to help.
- Use a timer: So you can get carried away and without realising you’ve spent 60 minutes trying to get this “perfect” hold.
- Don’t forget to breathe: Sounds silly but I used to accidentally hold me breath practicing Baby Crow as I was concentrating so hard!
- Don’t take it too seriously: Yes arm balances are cool but they’re not necessary and you’re life won’t dramatically get better in being able to do them.
|All names:||Baby Crow Pose, Bala Kakasana, Baby Kakasana|
|Sanskrit name:||Bala Kakasana|
|English name:||Baby Crow Pose|
|Counterpose:||Child’s Pose (Balasana)|
|Total time:||20 to 60 seconds|
|Pose level:||Advanced pose|
|Pose type:||Arm balance pose, Strength, Forward-Bend|
|Drishti point:||Down and forward toward fingertips|
|Targets:||Arms, shoulders, core|
|Regime Note:||Those who suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome, pregnant women should avoid this pose.|
Steps of Baby Crow Pose or Bala Kakasana
Baby Crow Pose is a super challenging arm balance pose and to do this variation of Crow Pose your core, upper body, shoulder and hip flexor strength is super important. Shoulders is one of the key areas to focus in this pose, so try out these steps to work your Baby Crow Pose or Bala Kakasana!
1. Cat-cow with Ujjayi
From the all-fours position, do some Cat-cow streches, focus on rounding the spine and pressing up between the shoulder blades. Move it through 5–10 rounds at the speed of breath.
2. Ardha Pincha Mayurasana (Dolphin pose)
Start with the Adho Mukha Svanasana, inhale, reaching your hips up. While exhaling, bend one elbow bring your forearm to the mat, after that bend your other elbow bringing your forearm to the mat. Your both elbows should be under the shoulders. Continue to raise your hips up while heels reach down. Engage your shoulder blades onto the back and gaze back towards your feet. Hold for 3–10 breaths and proceed on to the Dolphin Push-Ups.
3. Dolphin Push-Ups
Start from Ardha Pincha Mayurasana (Dolphin pose), take an inhale to look forward and lift your heels and as you exhale tap your chin toward the earth shifting your shoulders beyond the elbows. Repeat 5 repetitions then rest in child’s pose and move on to Makara Adho Mukha Svanasana (Dolphin Plank).
4. Makara Adho Mukha Svanasana (Dolphin Plank)
After resting in child’s pose, bring the gaze forward and move your torso forward on an exhale. Engage your belly toward the spin, scooping up in the hips and inner thighs. Keep your elbows in the same line as the shoulders and continue to scoop your hips up, making a long line from the head down to the heels. Now move on to Chaturanga Dandasana or Four-Limbed Staff pose a.k.a. Low Plank.
Bring your knees down to the mat while still engaging the core and shoulder blades onto the back. Hold for a 5-10 breaths then push back to child’s pose for a few breaths to rest.
5. Low Plank (Chaturanga Dandasana)
After Chaturanga Dandasana, inhale looking forward and on the exhale push up to tabletop pose. Spread your fingers wide and work your finger tips and base of the palms into the mat. Push the mat away with your palms and fingers. Inhale curling the toes under. Exhale, your hips up, straightening through the legs and coming to plank pose. Hold there for 1-2 breaths while engaging your core and inner thighs. Exhale and bend the elbows, hugging the upper arms toward your ribs. Lower the body down toward the mat, keeping your head, neck, back and bum in line. Your shoulders should not dip forward or below the elbows. Hold for 2-5 breaths and release to the floor, when ready, press back to Adho Mukha Shvanasana.
6. Utthan Pristhasana (Lizard Pose)
From Adho Mukha Shvanasana, inhale, your right leg up behind and exhale looking forward while stepping the right foot in between your hands. Walk your right foot out a couple inches keeping your ankle in line with the knee. Place your right hand to the inside of your right foot. Stay there or exhale bend your elbows, placing your forearms to the mat. Keep your left heel working toward the back of the mat. Hold there working on getting the torso low while stretching through your inner thigh and hamstring of your right leg. Repeat on the other side.
7. Surya Namaskar (Sun solution)
Use this to calm your mind, connect with your divine feminine energy, and harness the energy of the Gods and Goddesses.
Step-2: Baby Crow Pose or Bala Kakasana
- Begin in Malasana (garland pose).
- Bring your forearms down to the floor and stack knees on your upper arms like you do for crow pose.
- Shift your weight forward, and take your gaze to your fingertips.
- Begin to lift your one leg up and then two to balance.
- Squeeze the knees into your upper arms.
- Squeeze your elbows in like you would in a Low Plank (Chaturanga Dandasana), staying very active in your arms and not letting your elbows come beyond parallel.
- Think heels to butt, and really lift up through the legs.
- Draw your abdominal wall in and up to help support the weight of the body in the arm balance.
2. Anatomy tips:
- Shift your more weight forward than you think is necessary, and feel the weight in forearms, palms, and fingertips.
- Envision the whole body engaging and lifting up. Nothing should be loose or disengaged here.
- Baby Crow Pose or Bala Kakasana is deceptively harder than crow pose because your center of gravity is so close to the floor. This pose will build your shoulder and core strength.
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Written by Anjali Kumari. She is a certified yoga instructor, Diploma in Make up, Nails and Beauty, Diploma in Nutrition, Food, Science and Menu Planning. Anjali is the destination of choice for the latest updates, tips and resources in beauty, health and wellness, and all topics that mean the most to today’s woman. Whether it’s advice from a trusted expert or a DIY tutorial, she has it all. She is passionate and obsessive about science and how it can be applied in daily lifestyle. According to her, food is the best medicine and proper nutrition is the key to achieving good health and beauty. When she is not working, she likes to spend quality time with family and friends. She loves creating innovative, healthy recipes and healthy choices for foods to promote good health.