Benefits: This pose calms the brain, helps relieve stress, stretches shoulders, hamstrings, calves, strengthens the arms and legs, helps relieve the symptoms of menopause, improves digestion, relieves headache, insomnia, back pain, and fatigue, therapeutic for high blood pressure, asthma, flat feet, sciatica.
Contraindications (Cautions): Shoulder/neck injuries, keep knees bent.
Step by Step
1. Come onto hands and knees. The knees are directly below hips and forearms to floor with shoulders directly above wrists. Firmly press palms together and forearms into the floor.
2. Curl toes under, exhale and lift knees away from the floor. Lengthen your tailbone away from the back of your pelvis and press it lightly toward the pubis. Lift sitting bones toward the ceiling, and from inner ankles draw the inner legs up into the groins.
3. Press forearms actively into the floor. Firm shoulder blades against your back, then widen them away from the spine and draw them toward the tailbone. Hold your head between the upper arms; don’t let it hang or press heavily against the floor.
4. Begin to straighten the knees, if ready and feel comfortable, but if your upper back rounds it’s best to keep them bent. Stay between 30 seconds to one minute. Then release knees to floor as you exhale.
In this pic I have come up onto tiptoes – it enables me to focus on firming arms, to float chest towards thighs, and lengthen tailbone away from pelvis. Please work to what suits you and your body best.