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Inversions on a yoga swing don't require the same strength and balance as traditional inversions.
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Yoga swings can be used to practice inversions, or upside-down poses, with a safe support. Traditionally, yogic inversions require substantial strength and balance to sustain an upside-down position. Using a swing can provide the benefits of inversions, and the engaging playfulness, with support. The swing isn't a seatbelt, though, so you'll still need to follow appropriate steps and pay attention to your body to avoid getting injured.1.
Warm up your body with gentle stretches before approaching a yoga swing. Because inversions are intense poses, it's inappropriate to immediately hop into a supported backbend or headstand. Moving through stretches to warm up the back, shoulders, legs, arms, neck and core will help keep you safe.2.
Approach the yoga swing and reach for its edges with your hands. Some structured yoga swings will have handles for you to grip. In simpler constructions, you'll just grab onto the swing's material folds for support. Holding onto the swing helps provide stability as you prepare to enter the hammock-like center.3.
Step into the swing as you would climb onto a traditional playground swing, stepping over the saddle with one leg and then the other before sitting down. If the swing's center is bunched, use your hands to spread the material to create a wide space for settling in. Alternately, you can back into the swing and then sit down. If there are handgrips, reach for them as you sit for extra support.4.
Hold onto the yoga swing's straps and then lean back, allowing the material to feed through your hands until you achieve a backbend deep enough to create an inversion. Don't rush -- you'll want to use your breath to help slowly lower down. You should be able to feel the swing's support on your lower back from this position. Allow the head and neck to relax.
- To extend the inversion, you can create a deeper backbend by reaching for first one and then the other ankle with your hands. The yoga swing should be firmly supporting your lower back so that the back doesn't overextend in this position.
- Another possibility for deepening the inversion is to extend first one leg and then the other leg above the swing, placing the feet inside the swing's available foot straps. Hands can grip the hand straps for support, or you can allow your hands to dangle free in a more restorative gesture.
- For an alternate yoga swing inversion, hook one leg across both hammock straps to create a figure-four shape. If your right leg is crossed across the straps, reach back with the right arm for the left angle for a supported, inverted quad stretch.