Use a sturdy chair for balancing yoga poses.
If you're new to yoga or have limited range of motion, balance and flexibility, use props -- such as a chair -- to help you safely do balancing and stretching yoga poses. Using modifications with a chair in yoga allows you to strengthen and stretch your muscles with a reduced risk of strain or risk of injury. Use a chair for standing balance poses such as Tree and seated stretching poses such as Knee-to-Chest.
Standing Tree Pose1.
Stand to the left side of your chair and hold on to it with your right hand.2.
Lift your left foot off the ground, turn the left knee out using your hip flexors and place the sole of your left foot on the inside of your right calf.3.
Hold and and take three to five deep breaths in and out through your nose.4.
Move to the right side of the chair and repeat the pose while balancing on your left foot and holding the chair with your left hand.
Sit tall in the chair. Straighten and lengthen your upper body so the crown of your head reaches up to the ceiling.2.
Lift your right foot off the ground, bringing your knee toward your chest.3.
Place your hands underneath your right thigh to hold the stretch.4.
Take three to five deep breaths in and out through your nose.5.
Gently release and switch legs, repeating the stretch on the left side.
- Use the chair for other standing poses that require one hand on the chair for support such as Warrior I, Reverse Warrior and Triangle. For more difficult standing balance poses, such as Warrior III and Balancing Chair, stand behind the chair and hold on to the back of the chair with both hands.
- If getting down on the floor to do yoga poses is uncomfortable or if kneeling is difficult, you can sit in the chair for other stretching poses such as seated Cow, Cat and Spinal Twist.
- Even though most yoga sessions without a chair are done barefoot, keep your shoes on in chair yoga class if you are worried about stubbing your toes on the chair.
- Avoid using a folding or light-weight chair. These kinds of chairs can move or collapse if you put too much weight on them or if you start to lose your balance. A sturdy chair will bear your weight as needed.