Yoga Poses for dancers is nothing new. Therefore, it is often incorporated within many practice routines and training sessions for dancers.
Many people all over the world use Yoga techniques for improving their health. It is also used for relaxing their body and focusing their mind.
Yoga was incorporated into various forms of dancing. It helps dancers with various aspects of their art. Let’s take a closer look at how Yoga benefits the dancer’s overall ability.
Yoga Poses are Designed for Dancers Regardless of Body Type
Many dancers believe that they must have the ideal body type to get into a career. While there is a lot of truth in this assumption, the fact is that many dancers have different body shapes.
Yoga’s movements can be performed by anyone regardless of their physical makeup. Therefore, it is important for dancers to understand.
Many dancers struggle with their body image and to maintain a certain weight. Yoga can help by providing them with movements that do not need an extremely thin or light frame to perform.
Dancers Can Develop Flexibility and Mobility with Yoga Poses
All dancers need to be mobile and flexible. This is one reason why dancers typically have small and thin frames. A dancer must be agile, graceful and move with ease.
This can often be a hard thing to achieve for some dancing students. It can be even harder to maintain for people who have been dancing for a while.
Yoga Poses for dancers can help them to overcome this problem. It provides them with specific stretches and progressive movements. This is what will help them to remain limber. Therefore, Yoga strengthening postures can also add this benefit as well.
Muscle Memory, Dancing and Yoga Poses
One important aspect of any type of dancing is being able to remember the movements. That is why dancers practice a movement to the point where their body remembers how to do it.
Muscle memory is a critical component of dancing or for most physical activities. Yoga has many different types of poses for a person to learn.
A person progresses through each pose. They learn how to perform this movement through repetition. They also hold the pose to allow their body to remember how it is performed.
This aspect of practicing Yoga poses translates over into dancing. Dancers must practice a move or movement until they can perform it as second nature.
Yoga poses are a great way for professional and amateur dancers to enhance their ability. This discipline is beneficial to their development as a dancer.
It can also help them to advance to more sophisticated routines and movements. All dancers should find Yoga poses to incorporate in their practices and training. Ultimately, this discipline will help them to fully develop their craft.
9 Yoga Poses For A Dancer’s Physique [Pose 1]
- From a standing position, step feet apart slightly wider than shoulder-distance. Toes are pointing outward.
- As you inhale, reach arms overhead wide pressing palms together.
- As you exhale, bend knees 90 degrees and pull hands to chest sliding your shoulder blades downward.
- Keep knees pointed over feet and tailbone tucked under the body.
- Hold 30 seconds and breathe. Stand and lengthen, then draw back down and hold for another 30 seconds.
9 Yoga Poses For A Dancer’s Physique [Pose 2]
- Stand in mountain pose.
- Transition to Downward facing dog.
- Step your right foot forward between your hands.
- Raise your torso as you inhale.
- Do not overarch your lower back.
- Keep your front shin vertical.
- Draw your front ribs down and into your torso.
- Finally, release the pose.
9 Yoga Poses For A Dancer’s Physique [Pose 3]
- Stand tall with feet together and arms by side.
- Shift your weight onto your left foot and pull your right heel toward your right glute.
- Reach around with your right hand and grab hold of your right foot or ankle. Draw your knees together.
- Take a deep breath in. As you exhale simultaneously press right foot back and up while reaching left arm forward and up.
- Hold 30 seconds and breathe, extending the stretch with each exhale. Finally, switch sides.
9 Yoga Poses For A Dancer’s Physique [Pose 4]
Warrior 3 Pose
- Stand in Tadasana (Mountain Pose), exhale and fold forward to Uttanasana. From Uttanasana, exhale and step your left foot back into a high lunge position. Your right knee should be more or less at a right angle.
- Lay the midline of your torso (pubis to the sternum) down on the midline of the right thigh (knee to the hip crease). Bring your hands to your right knee, right hand to the outer knee, left hand to the inner. Squeeze the knee with your hands. Lift your torso slightly, and with an exhalation, turn it slightly to the right.
- From the lunge position, stretch your arms forward, parallel to the floor and parallel to each other. Palms facing each other. Exhale and press the head of the right thighbone back and press the heel into the floor.
- Synchronize the straightening of the front leg and the lifting of the back leg. As you lift the back leg, resist by pressing the tailbone into the pelvis.
- Don’t allow the torso to swing forward as you move into position. As you straighten the front knee, think of pressing the head of the thighbone back. This centers the femur in the hip joint grounds the heel into the floor and stabilizes the position.
- The arms, torso, and raised leg should be parallel to the floor. For many students, the pelvis tends to tilt. Release the hip [of the raised leg] toward the floor until the two hip points are even and parallel to the floor.
- Energize the back leg and extend it strongly toward the wall behind you. Reach just as strongly in the opposite direction with the arms. Bring the head up slightly and look forward, but be sure not to compress the back of your neck.
- Stay in this position for 30 seconds to a minute. Release back to the lunge on an exhalation. Bring your hands to the floor on either side of the right foot. On an exhalation, step your left foot forward to meet your right.
- Stay in this forward bend for a few breaths. Finally, repeat for the same length of time on the other side.
9 Yoga Poses For A Dancer’s Physique [Pose 5]
Side Leg Plank Pose
- Begin in Downward-Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana). Lower your hips and shift your weight forward to come into Plank
- Pose (the top of a push-up): Palms flat, body extended, with your legs reaching through your heels.
- Step your feet together and press your weight down through your right hand and forearm. Then, roll your body to the right, balancing on the outer edge of your right foot. Stack your left foot on top of your right foot and keep your legs straight.
- Beginners can lower their right knee and shin to the mat. Keep their hips lifted while building strength in the arms and torso.
- Extend your left arm to the sky, reaching through your fingertips. Lift your hips and firm the triceps of both arms. Feel the muscles across your shoulder blades flex. Firm your thighs, and press through your heels into the floor.
- Bring your body into one straight line. Gaze at your top thumb. Press down through your bottom index finger.
- Hold for up to 30 seconds. Finally, exhale as you slowly return to Plank Pose, then into Downward-Facing Dog.
- Repeat on the opposite side.
9 Yoga Poses For A Dancer’s Physique [Pose 6]
- Start lying on back with arms next to side and legs pointed straight into the air above hips. Press low back into the mat so abs are tight.
- Lower right leg a few inches from the mat. As you raise right leg up, begin lowering left leg the same way. Continue switching right and left for the desired number of reps.
- For added resistance and stretch, flex your torso up off the ground and grab each ankle as they stretch upward.
9 Yoga Poses For A Dancer’s Physique [Pose 7]
- Kneel on an exercise mat or floor, positioning your knees and feet hip-width apart. Feet dorsiflexed
- Slowly lean forward to place your hands on the mat. Position them under your shoulders at shoulder-width with your fingers facing forward.
- Reposition your hands and knees as necessary so that your knees are under your hips. Hands are directly under your shoulders.
- Stiffen your core and abdominal muscles to position your spine in a neutral position. Avoid any excessive sagging or arching.
- This exercise involves a simultaneous movement of your leg and (opposite) arm. This exercise is best performed facing a mirror.
- Slowly extend your left hip (raise and straighten the knee). Attempt to extend it until it is at, or near parallel, to the floor without any rotation in the hip. Your goal is to keep both hips parallel to the floor.
Use a light bar placed across the hips, parallel to the waistline. It provides visual feedback to hip rotation and what corrections are needed.
- Slowly flex your right arm (raise and straighten the arm). Attempt to raise it until it is at, or near parallel, to the floor without any tilting at the shoulders. Your goal is to keep both shoulders parallel to the floor.
Use a light bar placed across the shoulders. It provides visual feedback to shoulder rotation and what corrections are needed.
- Your head should remain aligned with the spine throughout the movement.
- Control against movement in the low back. This determines the degree of hip extension and shoulder flexion. As the leg is raised, individuals may witness an increase in low back sagging. Only raise the limbs to heights where the low back position can be maintained. Use the combined actions of the core and abdominal muscles.
- Finally, lower yourself back to your starting position. Repeat with the opposite limbs.
The bird-dog is an excellent exercise to train the body how to stabilize the low back. Stabilize during upper and lower extremity movement. Never exceed your body’s capacity to control movement in the low back.
9 Yoga Poses For A Dancer’s Physique [Pose 8]
- Begin seated with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor, hands resting beside your hips. Draw your awareness inward and focus on your breath. Allow your inhalations and exhalations to be smooth, calm, and even.
- Keep your spine straight.
- Lean back slightly and lift your feet, bringing your shins parallel to the floor.
- Draw in your low back, lift your chest, and lengthen the front of your torso. Then, extend your arms forward, in line with your shoulders with your palms facing each other.
- Balance on your sit bones, keeping your spine straight. Take care not to let your lower back sag or chest collapse.
Lengthen the front of your torso from your pubic bone to the top of your sternum. The lower belly (the area below your navel) should be firm and somewhat flat, but not hard or thick.
- With an exhalation, straighten your legs to a 45-degree angle from the ground, bringing your body into a “V” shape.
Keep your breath easy, steady, and smooth. Focus your awareness within. Soften your eyes and your face. Gaze at your toes.
- Spread your shoulder blades wide and reach out through your fingers. Engage your hands. Stay in the pose for five breaths, gradually working up to one minute.
- Finally, to release the pose, exhale as you lower your legs and hands to the floor.
9 Yoga Poses For A Dancer’s Physique [Pose 9]
- Start on hands and knees, bring your right knee forward and place it more or less behind your right wrist. Place your ankle somewhere in front of your left hip. The more your lower leg is parallel with the front of the mat, the more intense the hip opener.
- Slide your left leg back, straighten the knee and point the toes. Make sure your leg is behind your body and not drawing outwards and your heel is pointing up to the ceiling.
- Draw your legs in towards each other to help keep your hips square.
- Gently lower yourself down and use some support under your right buttock to keep your hips level. (if needed)
On an inhale lift your upper body, come on your fingertips. Hands shoulder width apart, draw your navel in, tailbone down and open your chest.
- On an exhale walk your hands forward on the fingertips and lower your upper body to the floor. You can rest your forearms and forehead on the mat.
- Stay here for 5 breaths or longer and on an exhale try to release the tension in your right hip.
- Balance your weight on both legs.
- Finally, come out of the pose by pushing back through the hands and lifting the hips, move the leg back into all fours.
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