– Not using your core. When you don’t do this, your back is unsupported. FIX – To make sure you’re engaging your core, simply exhale as fully as possible. Squeeze your belly button toward your spine as you do so. This feeling of tightness in your abs is core engagement. Maintain this. Lengthen your tailbone and press your toes firmly into the ground.
Not squeezing your legs together. FIX – Squeeze your legs together; toes, ankles, knees, thighs, and hips. This improves core engagement, to help you build more strength and endurance while during this pose, and avoid back discomfort.
Not lifting your knees off the ground. FIX – Make sure your thighs are tensed and your knees up!
Improper foot placement / feet lifting away from the ground. FIX – Press the tops of your toes into the ground and squeeze your big toes together. This helps keep your core active, which prevents back pain or discomfort.
Using your upper body to push up instead of lifting with your core. FIX – Pressing off the ground instead of lifting. Cobra is not a push-up. Your goal is to lengthen your torso, and then using your core strength, to lightly and with control lift your chest away from the ground. Avoid lifting up quickly. Instead, focus on slowly lifting your torso away from the ground. You should be able to continue breathing during this pose – even if it’s difficult to do so.
Not maintaining length in your spine. FIX – Maintain length in spine
Not breathing – Lots of people tend to hold their breath in cobra. Make sure this isn’t you. FIX – Continue to breathe, and focus on doing so in and out of your nose to help maintain greater control over your body. Make sure breathing as long as possible. Remember that this pose is all about control, and just getting as high as you can.
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