fun pose friday: dolphin/forearm plank

Happy Friday yogis! In this week’s Fun Pose Friday we’ll focus on dolphin plank or forearm plank.

This pose is a mix of dolphin and plank postures and is a great tool to help build strength, flexibility but most of all heat up your core!

There are a few ways to get into dolphin plank.  From hands and knees, drop down to forearms, then lift the hips and walk the feet back until the body is extended in a long (strong) line from shoulders down to the feet.

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Another way to come into the pose is to go from downward facing dog to dolphin pose, then walk the feet back and stretch the body out long.

Once in the pose, make sure forearms rest flat on the ground. Elbows should be stacked under the shoulders. Activate the core muscles to keep hips from sagging down (ie: sure the navel in towards to spine). Legs should be straight and the body should be parallel to the ground.  All the muscle sin the body should be working in this pose– legs are strong, core it tight, forearms are pushing firmly into the ground in order to lift the belly up to avoid sagging.

Benefits of dolphin plank include:

• Strengthens the core, shoulders, arms and legs

• Stretches the shoulders, hamstrings, calves, and foot arches

• Can calm the mind and help relieve stress

• Helps prevent osteoporosis

Hold dolphin plank anywhere from 30 to 60 seconds. To exit the pose, drop knees down to the mat on an exhale.

Dolphin plank is an excellent option for  people with wrist issues who experience too much pressure on their wrists in regular plank.

If dolphin plank is tough to hold, you can bring the knees down to the mat.  For those of you seeking an additional challenge, lift each foot off of the floor and hold for several breaths.

For more step-by-step instruction on dolphin plank, check out this post from Yoga Journal.