It may look super fancy, but baby grasshopper pose is a great introduction to arm balances for people at all stages in their yoga journey. The support of one hand staying on the floor and the arm binding across the standing leg helps to provide additional support and remove (at least some of) the fear of face planting that often comes with other starting arm balances such as crow pose.
Follow this step by step tutorial and with a bit of practice and patience you’ll soon be flying into your arm balance.
Grow tall and set up for the posture
Start sitting tall with both legs extended out long, feet engaged with toes pointing towards the sky. Bend one knee and move the foot to the outside of the other leg, keeping it close to the leg. The further above the knee you can position the foot, the easier the next steps will be.
Roll onto the outside of extended leg and foot
Shift your weight to the side so you roll onto the outside of your extended leg and foot, bringing both hands to the inside of the bent knee for support. Turn the toes of the foot on your bent leg to face the side of your mat, making sure the whole sole of the foot makes contact with the mat.
Lengthen the spine and reach the hand to the sky
Grow tall, extending from your sitting bones all the way to the top of your head. Reach the hand closest to your bent leg high to the sky to help you lengthen even more, the other hand stays on the mat behind you for extra support and to help you lift.
Reach for the foot of the extended leg
Continue reaching to the tips of your fingers, then lean forwards so that the arm remains on the inside of the bent knee. Take your reach to the side, drawing the hand towards the foot of your extended leg. The other hand stays on the met, with the elbow drawing back towards your body (think nice strong chaturanga arm).
Take hold of the foot
Grab hold of your foot (if you aren’t able to reach then holding the ankle or using a strap looped round the foot to extend your reach are both great alternatives). Press the foot away from you into your hand, it’s this counter opposition that will help you to strongly engage through the leg and core and assist you with that all important lift off.
Fly high into your baby grasshopper
Continue pressing the foot into your hand as you lean forwards, keeping the elbow of your other arm hugging towards the body to maintain the strength of the shoulder girdle. When you lean forwards enough, you’ll find the correct ‘tipping point’ as your centre of gravity shifts and your bottom and leg take flight.
And voila!! There you have it, flying high in your baby grasshopper posture ready to take on whatever else the week throws at you!