The forearm stand -Pincha Mayurasana- is a wonderful alternative inversion for the handstands, which can be a lot of pressure on the wrists. However, the forearm stand can be very challenging. There are many ways to build the shoulder strength to help hold the inversion, and also the lengthening and openness (think Gomukasana – Cow face pose – arms) needed to find the foundation.
This post is for those who already have Pincha Mayurasana in their practice, and are beginning to explore transitioning into Scorpion -Vrischikasana- . And what better way to explore than with a friend!
Person 1 assumes Ado Mukha Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog) and Person 2 faces partner and places forearms on the inside of the partner’s hands and lifts into Pincha Mayurasana. Person 2 lightly places the balls of the feet (this is the part of the foot you balance on when you lift your heels off from the ground) onto Person 1 lower back. Begin to walk the balls of your feet down. This would be UP your partner’s back toward their shoulders. Stop when you need to stop. The more openness you have in your heart, the more you can walk your feet towards your head.
Time to play! When/if Scorpion feels too intense, lighten the load by lifting one leg so that you are in a half of a Scorpion. Try it with the opposite leg too. And be sure to switch poses with your partner! There are numerous fun variations that can make your practice a playful one. As always, be kind to yourself and listen to where you are in your own practice at any given moment.
*Please use a 3rd partner to assist you if Pincha Mayurasana is still relatively new to your practice, or if you have a bit of unsteadiness.
*Pincha Mayurasana and Vrischikasana in the above photos are done with the palms pressing against each other. This is an option if there is not enough room between your partner’s hands/arms for your own forearms and hands to be parallel to each other on the ground.