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Yoga Inversions

Well, I just finished a month-long yoga inversion challenge and figured it would be fun to post some of the more interesting poses I worked on. Most of these are not perfect, obviously, since I've never done them before and I need more flexibility to achieve a number of them. But I'm proud of all of my results because I worked hard!

I hope you're not tired of seeing my yoga pictures yet because I have a ton. Lol! 

I don't know where to start really because I don't want to bother with putting them in chronological order. It would take too long to figure that out. So I guess I'll begin with headstands, move on to handstands and then finish with arm balances.

This first one actually was one of the earlier poses and I look crazy, but only because I forgot to close my eyes. Your face pretty much always looks crazy straight on when your eyes are open. Haha! This one was super hard because everything is pulled in so tightly.

This next one was one of my first ever headstands away from the wall. The idea here was to twist the hips so it's not perfectly straight up and down. It's a little hard to tell, but I did try to rotate my legs to one side.

This one is actually not too hard. You need a little core strength to lift up the leg, but I got it pretty quickly.

By comparison, this was was VERY HARD! So, as you can imagine, going into a headstand is scary because you don't want to fall over backward. But with your hands positioned so tightly in the middle like this, you add in a side-to-side wobble as well...not to mention the leg positioning. I attempted this one MANY times before getting it done and I was wiped out!

This next one was tricky because I am not yet flexible enough to fold my legs into a lotus position without using my hands. So I leaned back against the wall and balanced on my head and one hand while I got the legs in and then repositioned. LOL! One day, I will do this pose the proper way.

So, the one below wasn't part of my challenge, but I saw it online and thought it looked pretty cool. I didn't execute it as perfectly as the photo I saw it in, but I still think it looks interesting.

Last headstand has an alternate arm position. This one looks crazy, but I actually didn't have any trouble with it. You just have to stay calm and breathe slowly so as not to freak out at the idea of it. (That's the key to a lot of yoga actually.) Haha! It's called a hollowback position, for obvious reasons.

Okay, moving on to handstands... I'm only posting two of these. For one thing, we didn't do that many and for another, the pictures don't look different enough for me to want to inundate you with them. I'm still not very good at balancing in handstands. I need a LOT more practice!

This first one was to practice tucking one leg. Eventually I'd like to be able to tuck both without losing my balance.

And the second one is just putting the legs in eagle position. I definitely used the wall to assist me here! (I think it's important that you know these pictures may look good, but none of this is easy for me and I still use props and walls to get some of these poses done.)

And now on to arm balances. To be honest, this inversion base used to be the most difficult one for me. I found the whole positioning awkward. But now that I've practiced these a lot more, I'm getting better at them and I actually think handstands are going to be my biggest challenge in the end.

The first one here is tucked legs, which makes balancing very difficult. And the added hurdle here was doing it with crossed arms.

So this one wasn't too bad overall, but I had to do it a few times to figure out the distance from the wall (I started much closer and worked my way out). It was fun though, aside from being hard to breathe in. I'm trying to be less scared of backbends as I work on them more and this wasn't a very deep one.

Technically, this one and the last one have my head on the floor, but I'm still including them in arm balances. The one below actually was supposed to have my head off the floor and looking toward my foot, but there was NO way I could do that yet. And, also technically, I was supposed to walk my leg in until I could grab my foot with my hands. Also not happening yet. I definitely modified this and it was still crazy hard!

Last up in arm balances is a scorpion pose on forearms. The full pose requires you to touch your feet to your head, but my spine is not quite ready for that! I was just proud I practiced this away from a wall and got it done! This was always one of those insane-looking poses that I never imagined I would try myself, so I feel pretty pleased with it.

And now, I realize I actually forgot a category, so I'll put the last few photos here. There are all kinds of other "stands" you can do. So, below, are a few examples.

The first is a shoulderstand. This was one of the earlier poses. Not too tricky. Legs in lotus, roll backward onto shoulders. 

Next up is a chinstand. It looks nuts, but after a few tries to figure out how to balance in it, I actually didn't think it was that bad. It's always a good day when you try something new and crazy only to realize you can do it!

And lastly, the actual last pose from the challenge. Scorpion again, but this time in a chinstand. I started off on the couch and sort of melted into it, but after some practice, I was able to lift away and up. Super proud of this effort! And the fact that Molly wandered over to cuten up my photo didn't hurt.

I hope you all enjoyed seeing some of these. I certainly had fun doing them. Each day, week, month, I'm trying to learn more and get better! You never know what you can do until you try. wink

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