How to Do the Plank Pose (Kumbhakasana)

The Plank pose is classified as one of the traditional Sun salutation sequences. This is the best pose to make your arms firm and stronger especially as beginner. It serves as a beginner practice to other challenging poses for the arms.

plank pose

POSE INFORMATION

GENERAL INFO

Name in Sanskrit: Kumbhakasana

Difficulty: Easy

POSE BENEFITS

  • It helps build strength across the arm, wrists and spines.
  • It also gives a level of toning to the abdominal muscles.

POSE CAUTIONS

The following health issues should take cautions from the exercise:

How to do the plank pose

HOW TO PRACTICE THIS ASANA

ONE

First do the Adho Mukha Svanasana. After that, inhale deeply and let your torso move forward.

Continue until your arms are perpendicular to the ground. At that state, ensure your torso is parallel to the floor and your shoulders are over the wrist.

TWO

Now bring the outer of your arms inwards, near your body. Make your grip firm on the floor with your fingers.

Make your shoulder blades firm against your back. Then spread them away form your spine.

Do the same with your collarbones to your sternum. Spread collarbones from your sternum.

THREE

Move your thighs upward like you are pressing them in the direction of the ceilings. But make your tailbone to press downward.

Pull up your head from he base of the neck and turn your face down to the floor. Notice how the throat and eyes are soft.

FOUR

Repeat this pose and ensure your stay on each pose for about 1-30 minutes.

How to do Plank Pose (Kumbhakasana)

VIDEO INSTRUCTIONS

BEGINNERS TIP

The aim of this pose is to generally strengthen the arm. To ensure that, tie a piece of cloth or strap to the upper part of the arm.

Then try to push the inner arms outwards of the strap. Move the outer arms from the shoulders towards the floor.

Move the inner arms towards the shoulders from the bases of index fingers.

MODIFICATIONS AND PROPS

Press your index fingers against the wall when doing the Adho Mukha Svanasana.

Then press your torso forward. Then press your head towards the wall. (You can see the previous steps above for insight.)

As your head is pressed to the wall, notice how your shoulder blades are released from the back.

Move your shoulders so that the space between the shoulder blades opens.

Now try to press the outer arms inward and ensure the blades are moving towards the space between them.

Ensure that the collar bones are not going wide while you do this. If you master this practice well, it will be useful during the Bakasana and the Sirsasana.

PARTNERING

Partners can help you move your thighs during the pose. The partner will first tie a strap to the upper part of your thighs (the area around the pelvis) and lift them up.

Don’t move your tailbone up with the lift; rather keep it down towards the floor. And extend your back thighs across your heels.

VARIATION

Like the Adho Mukha Svanasana, plank pose also has a one-legged lift variation. 

When in position, breathe in and carry one leg so that it is parallel to the floor. Keep your tail bone pressed to the pubis.

As you do so, keep your legs pressed through the heel and extend it to the crown of the head. Try to hold this position for 1-30 minutes.

Related Poses

How to Do the Plank Pose
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