Relax your body with the crocodile pose in yoga (Low plank pose)

Crocodile pose in yoga is extremely useful for supporting the body and spine. If done correctly, you will see the body is shaped like a crocodile with a straight spine.

The crocodile pose in yoga (Low PLAnk Pose) has the Sanskrit name Chaturanga Dandasana. This is one of the most difficult poses in yoga, but it is often recommended for beginners and for the most part, yoga teachers only give brief instructions, rarely analyzing what to avoid. You will easily see this move in the series of sun salutation yoga exercises and vinyasa exercises. Not only that, Chaturanga movement is also a preparation step for the body to perform advanced hand-balancing yoga movements.

Benefits of Crocodile Pose

Crocodile Pose can benefit the entire body because it requires you to work all of your muscles:

Easy to modify

The alligator pose is a difficult pose, to do it correctly requires a certain amount of strength and skill, but you can easily modify this pose to suit you best. Practicing the low plank pose regularly will be very helpful in increasing strength, even if you cannot perform the pose fully.

Strengthens your back and core

Similar to other plank exercises, this move helps to tune the whole body and strengthens the spine and the muscles on the sides to improve balance and create stability for the body.

In addition, regular practice of Chaturanga posture can also support you in everything from daily sitting, moving to participating in other sports.

Crocodile poseCrocodile Pose strengthens your back and core

Improve body awareness

Practicing Crocodile Pose can help you learn to correct imbalances and distribute your weight evenly to improve alignment and improve body awareness.

How to do low plank in yoga

Start with some stretching and breathing to warm up. Usually, Chaturanga Dandasana will be a small part of a large series of exercises:

  • Start in a plank position with arms and legs straight. Feet hip-width apart, shoulders in line with wrists. The heels press firmly into the floor while the top of the head is facing forward.
  • Move your shoulders in front of your wrists and tiptoes to the safe alligator pose
  • Extend your fingers and slightly curl them so that your palms are slightly lifted off the floor
  • Inhale, squeeze the body from the heels to the top of the head
  • Exhale, bend your elbows straight back, hugging your body as you move. Since the shoulder is already in front of the wrist, the forearm will be perpendicular to the floor.
  • Lower your body from the top of your head so that your body is parallel to the floor
  • Hold the pose for a few breaths, then you can exit or switch to face-up dog.
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Crocodile poseTo do the alligator pose, start with a plank

Some common mistakes

Crocodile pose is a difficult pose, so you may not be able to do it perfectly the first time. Here are some common mistakes that you should be aware of:

Shoulders not in line with wrists

If you don’t lean forward in plank before getting into alligator pose, your shoulders won’t be in line with your wrists. As a result, as you lower, your forearms will lie on a diagonal. That position won’t provide the support the shoulder needs.

Lower yourself too low

Avoid lowering your body too close to the floor. When your shoulders are lower than your elbows, you’ll put more weight on your shoulders and wrists. This condition, if prolonged, can cause injury. It is much safer if you keep your shoulders at or above your elbows.

If you’re not sure what your arms should look like, do the pose in front of a mirror or consult a friend. If you’re used to lowering your body, it may feel strange to put your body up higher, but don’t worry, because over time, this will be good for the shoulders.

Let your hips sag

If your hips sag, that’s a sign that you should lower your knees to the floor. You’ll have to do core strengthening exercises regularly to get better at low plank.

Some variations

One of the reasons your body tends to fall to the floor when doing alligator pose is due to a lack of upper body strength. To remedy this, you can put your knees on the ground and shift the weight forward.

Or you can also lower your knees to the floor after you have come forward in a plank position. Take a moment to expand your chest and then lower your upper body so that your arms form a right angle. You can lift your feet off the floor if you want, but that’s okay if you can’t.

To increase the difficulty of the crocodile pose in yoga, you can hold the pose for an extra beat or two to strengthen the muscles, or you can incorporate more plank poses into the exercise.

Some notes when practicing

If you have a shoulder injury, consult your doctor before practicing and only practice under the supervision of a professional yoga teacher. Also, if you have wrist pain or injury, talk to your yoga teacher for instructions on how to practice properly.

Reference source

How to Do Low Plank (Chaturanga Dandasana) in Yoga Accessed: 11/18/2020

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The Ups and Downs to a Stronger Chaturanga Accessed date: 11/18/2020

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