Kakasana or the crow posture is a type of balancing posture which strengthens the shoulders, arms and wrists. This asana can be performed as follows;
- Place your hands on the floor in front of your feet with the palms down, fingers spread comfortably apart. Be sure the hands are at least shoulder width or a little farther apart. Sometimes turning the finger tips very slightly towards each other with fingers slightly bent can be helpful.
- Bend your elbows and place your knees on the upper part of your arms above the elbows. The location of the knees varies from person to person depending on your body proportion and what is comfortable. Generally, the closer the knees are to the armpits the harder the crow posture gets.
- Look at the floor 2 to 3 feet in front of your hands. This is very important. As keeping your concentration in front of your hands will prevent you from falling forwards and crashing into the floor nose first. Some people like to place a pillow on the floor just in case they lose their balance.
- Slightly shift your weight forward over to your hands until your feet come gradually off the floor. Do not hop into position. When both feet are off the floor comfortably, touch the big toes together. Always keep looking at the floor in front of your hands while holding this position.
- In the beginning the crow posture can be somewhat painful for the wrists for some people. To make it easier, try shifting the weight forwards until you feel some pressure on the wrists, and then practice lifting first one foot and then the other off the ground until the wrists build up sufficient strength to lift both feet off the ground together.
- In the beginning, hold the posture for about 10 seconds, gradually working up to 1 minute or more.
The benefits of this asana are as follows;
- Strengthens the shoulders, rams and the wrist.
- Brings about the stretching of the muscles of forearms, wrist and fingers.
- Improves balance.
- This asana is especially very beneficial for repetitive stress related injuries as carpal tunnel syndrome, and for people who work on the computers quite often.
- Brings about the improvement in the mental equilibrium and sense of calmness.
- Helps in the improvement of concentration.
- Also increases the breathing capacity.
Precautionary measures that are to be followed while performing this asana are:
- If you are suffering from any wrist, elbow hand or shoulder injuries this asana must be performed with care.
- Never jerk your legs off the floor, you can fall and injure your wrist if you do not have a good balance.