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How Crow Pose Can Help You Believe You Can Fly

Updated: Oct 1, 2022

It's not just any arm balance. Bakasana (Crow Pose), often referred to as the gateway yoga pose to all arm balances, gave me the courage to take flight, and it can help you, too.

Julie M. Gentile in Crow Pose on teal yoga mat on dock with trees and grass in the background
Photo © Copyright by Laura Brown Photography.

Learning how to balance on your hands in Bakasana (Crow Pose) brings up fear—fear of falling, fear of failing and fear of the unknown. I know it did for me. For years, I didn't think I could, so I didn't.

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After becoming familiar with the modifications for Crow Pose, one afternoon during an at-home yoga practice, I entered the pose as I normally did with my tip toes still touching the ground. I raised my left foot, then my right, and propelled just enough weight forward that within seconds, I was flying, and it was fun! I was hooked.

Get ready for a fun flight with Bakasana (Crow Pose).

Getting in the groove with Crow Pose completely shifted my mindset on what is possible on and off the mat. It allowed me to become more curious with other arm balance poses, such as Parsva Bakasana (Side Crow Pose), Baby Grasshopper Pose and Mayurasana (Peacock Pose).

I also noticed that practicing arm balances brought an adventurous spirit of courage in other areas of my life as a busy working mom. I planned spontaneous date nights to new destinations with my family and I began to express my authentic voice more regularly.

It took years of practice to build up the courage and strength to allow my hands to become my feet in this pose, and that's just it. Yoga is a practice, and you have your entire life to try and try again.

I finally believed I could, so I did.

Practice It: Work Up to Crow Pose in Malasana (Garland Pose)

  • Begin with your feet wider than your hips and your toes pointing outward, heels pointing inward.

  • Sink your sit bones toward the earth until you come into a squat position with sit bones floating above the earth. If your heels lift, you can place a folded blanket under them or keep them raised.

  • Press your palms together and press the outsides of your arms to the insides of your legs.

  • Stay here for a few breaths. Gently release by taking your hands behind you and slowly coming down to the earth.

Note that this website and the Stand Up for Your Self-Care YouTube Channel are for informational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Speak with your doctor before beginning any new exercise routine or wellness plan.

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