TGIF yogis! This week’s Fun Pose Friday is all about firefly or tittibhasana. This is a beautiful pose, and for many, a very challenging arm balance. But just like most yoga poses, there are variations and preparatory poses to get you started!
(Krista Block pictured above – ROCKIN’ Tittibhasana!)
There is a lot of strength and flexibility required from your body to fly in firefly. Some poses that can help to physically prepare for this pose include: happy baby, forward fold, butterfly, malasana, crow, lizard and shoulder-pressing pose (Bhujapidasana – pictured below).
To get into firefly, start in a standing forward fold and move feet slightly wider than the width of your hips.
Bring a slight bend to the knees as you walk one hand back behind the legs and inch the shoulder back between the legs. Then do this with the other arm, until you can land both palms behind the feet, with fingertips pointing forward toward your heels.
Spread fingers wide to create a sturdy base and start lowering your hips. Use the arms as a ledge to support your body. Begin sitting back and shifting weight off of the feet and onto the arms. Ease your feet up off the ground and extend your legs to take flight into firefly!
(Sarah Evans in her tittibhasana & Krista in a great variation or family member of titti: tittibhasana C)
Hold for five to 10 breaths while squeezing legs into triceps to maintain the pose. While doing firefly, keep your chest lifted and gaze forward. As you progress in the pose and feel increasingly stable holding it, work on straightening the arms.
To exit the pose, bend the knees and bring your feet back to the floor. Then remove the arms from behind the legs.
Benefits of firefly pose include:
• Deepens hamstring, groin and hip flexibility
• Opens the chest
• Increases strength in the wrists, arm and core muscles
• Improves balance
Firefly is not recommended for those with injuries to the lower back, elbow wrist, or shoulder.
Check out this video from Yoga Journal for more guidance on getting into firefly.
Good luck soaring with the fireflies yogis! See you on the mat!