There are many challenges and downsides to doing a self-practice, but one of the great advantages is that you can pretty much do and try whatever you want. I had a lot of fun today coming up with some new asana sequences in my flow self-practice. One sequence in particular really kicked my butt. This is a pretty tricky little set of asanas, so I don’t advise anyone to try it unless you are pretty experienced with yoga and can already do the poses described with some considerable degree of confidence and safety.
2. Lunge right leg forward and come into Warrior I.
3. Bring hands to heart-center and open up to Warrior II.
4. Lean back into Reverse Warrior.
5. Extend front arm forward and come into Parsvakonasana (Extended Side-Angle Pose)
6. Staying in Parsvakonasa, lift the lower arm off the ground until it is extended forward and parallel to the top arm.
7. Return arms to normal Parsvakonasa, and then straighten the front leg to bring yourself into Triangle Pose.
8. Staying in Triangle, extend the top arm forward.
9. Staying in Triangle, with the top arm forward, lift the lower arm off the ground until it is extended forward and parallel to the top arm.
10. Return arms to normal Triangle.
11. Look down, bend front knee a little and step up into Half-Moon Pose, or Ardha Chandrasana.
12. Extend top arm forward in Ardha Chandrasana.
13. Staying in Ardha Chandrasana with the top arm extended forward, lift the lower arm off the ground until it is extended forward and parallel to the top arm.
14. Return arms to regular Ardha Chandrasana. Then bring both hands to the floor.
15. Transition into Standing Split. Hold for several deep breaths.
16. From Standing Split, carefully stand up and transition into Tree Pose.
17. Move into Falling Tree: extend arms upward, then hinge at the hips until the hands come to the floor beside the feet or just ahead of the feet. (Hands should be about shoulder-width apart.)
18. Place both hands firmly into the ground, and then slowly lift yourself into a Handstand with your legs in Tree Pose the entire way, keeping the standing leg perfectly straight all the way up if possible. If this is too much, you can bend the standing leg and give a little kick to get you up into what I like to call Upside-Down Tree (i.e. handstand with legs in Tree).
19. After holding for a few breaths in Upside-Down Tree, slowly lower the legs down (keep the legs in Tree Pose though), setting one foot on the ground just behind your hands. Bring hands to Namaste, and then slowly stand back up to regular Tree Pose.
20. Release the Tree Pose, and then cross the ankle over the opposite knee. Bend down into a One-Legged Chair Pose, with arms extended overhead.
21. Sink deep into the One-Legged Chair Pose and eventually fold forward, extending your arms forward as you do.
22. Keeping the ankle crossed over the knee, release the hands to the ground and set up for Eka Pada Galavasana, or Flying Crow Pose.
23. Lift yourself up into Eka Pada Galavasana, and, if you can, extend the back leg straight out behind you.
24. Jump back into Chaturanga.
25. Take a well-deserved Child’s Pose.
26. Repeat on other side.
Disclaimer: I am not a certified yoga instructor, and the ideas and opinions expressed here are not intended to be formal instruction on yoga poses. If you plan to start up a yoga practice, or if you have one and plan to do any of the yoga poses described in this blog, please seek out an experienced, living, breathing yoga teacher to guide you with hands-on instruction.