As we grow older, it is easy to avoid play because of its childlike nature. Freedom isn’t only for children. Space is important for adults as well. It allows us to test our limits and explore and develop new skills. Playing with yoga will enable you to explore yourself, build physical strength, test mental limits, and have fun.
Kurmasana (also known as Tittibhasana) and Kurmasana
Play and patience are required to make the transition from the tortoise pose (kurmasana) to the firefly pose (tittibhasana). Both carriages are challenging but in different ways. In kurmasasana, your senses are drawn inwards like a tortoise inside its shell. You open the hips while pressing the upper body towards the floor. In tittibhasana, you open the hips and balance on your hands while flying like a firefly. While kurmasana grounds, tittibhasana lifts.
Warm-up and Explore
Warm up by performing 5- 10 sun salutations. As you explore each movement, take your time and focus on how it feels. This mental shift helps you prepare to play around with the tortoise and firefly pose.
Find a Fold
Start with a forward fold. Start by folding forward.
Come to malasana or garland pose. Roll the wrists in order to prepare for balance. Start by moving the shoulders underneath the thighs. Be aware of how it feels for you.
Turn Toward Tortoise
Lift the sit bones and place them under the armpits. Start by lowering the upper body. Spread the fingers and stretch the hands to the side. Relax the entire body, and let the legs rest on your arms. Start by exploring your tortoise position with a slight knee bend.
Float into Firefly
Start slowly to extricate the tortoise by pressing the floor with each finger. Start by bending your knees and bringing the heels towards you until the sit bones are on the ground. As soon as your sit bones have touched the ground, start moving your shoulders under your thighs. Bring your hands to the inner hips, with your fingers facing outward. Start lifting by activating through your fingers. Lift one leg and then the other to test your balance.
Adjust the shoulders underneath the armpits, and activate your lower core. As you extend your legs and feet, balance yourself on the upper arms. You can explore your balance by lifting your feet and gazing forward.
To exit, lower your feet slowly and return the sit bones to the floor. Release the arms. As you sit in the apadana position, bring your knees towards your chest.
Step outside your comfort zone by putting play into practice
The Tortoise and Firefly pose are both challenging to the body and mind. Take some time today to play, even if you can’t do the poses. Playing helps you explore and step out of your comfort zone.