In the spirit of heart season, I want to talk about a common yoga mistake I see when it comes to heart-opening practices. Often times when I’m training other instructors or clients, they approach heart opening from the front body only. Step into the Virtual Break Room to see what common yoga mistakes happen in this arena.
Common yoga mistakes
The common yoga mistake that is made is that opening the heart is not a two-dimensional practice. It’s important to target the sides of the heart, as well as the back of the heart, in order to have a well-balanced practice. It can be tricky because it’s hard to see the back of the heart. We physically cannot see the upper back.
In order to fully open the heart, we have to step into the unknown. Find the courage and step into the space unseen.
Don’t take my word for it, try for yourself. Check out these non-traditional heart-opening poses below. You can weave them into other heart-opening sequences. Let me know how it goes, and I’ll look forward to seeing you again in the Virtual Break Room!
Non-Traditional Heart Opening Poses
Back of the Heart
The poses in this series that open the back of the heart include eagle pose, cat pose, and crescent lunge with a twist. These three poses help reclaim the space in the upper back muscles and work into the space unseen.
Sides of the Heart
The poses in this series that open the sides of the heart are chair pose, reverse warrior and hero pose. These three poses help lengthen the intercostal muscles that wrap around the rib cage. Not only is this a good side heart opener, it also creates expansion around the rib cage for easier breathing.
(Somewhat) Traditional Heart Opener
The one pose in this series that is more traditional in terms of dimension is the standing locust pose. This pose opens the front of the heart while strengthening the back body. You see this range of motion more common in traditional heart opening sequences.