How to Do Balancing Table Pose | Yoga Basics
How to Do the Balancing Table Pose
Balancing Table Pose is a pose that can greatly enhance your flexibility and body control. While it may be intimidating at first, our step by step instructions will make sure you can perform Balancing Table Pose correctly and safely.
Step 1: Start on Your Hands and Knees
Begin on all fours on your mat and sit back towards your feet. We are warming up your hips and spine to prepare for the stability challenge of your Balancing Table Pose.
Step 2: Gaze Downwards
After you’re on your hands and knees, gaze downward. This is important so you can relax your neck. If you are looking up with your gaze, your may be extending your spine, and we want to keep your spine neutral.
Step 3: Draw Your Belly Towards Your Spine
Next, start to sit forward with your shoulders stacked over your wrists and hips over your knees. Make sure your spine is neutral and not flexed or extended. This will be your base position.
Step 4: Extend Your Left Arm Forward
Once your body is set, you will slowly extend your left arm. Try not to tilt your body to the opposite side. Stay firm and centered.
Step 5: Extend your Right Leg Back
With your left hand extended out, now extend your right (opposite) leg. As well, stay firm and grounded by engaging your abs and glutes, and try not to allow yourself to dip to one side or lose your balance.
Step 6: Hold the Pose
After you are in the pose, try to hold for 20 seconds. Holding the pose will challenge your core strength and stability. Make sure you are breathing and not arching your back.
Step 7: Exhale and Return to Table Pose
Once your 20 second hold is complete, take a controlled exhale and place your hand and foot back on the ground, returning back to your tabletop. Even though tabletop is a resting pose, your core muscles should be engaged throughout the exercise.
Step 8: Repeat on the Opposite Side
When one side is complete, perform the same motion on the opposite side. Raise your right arm up along with your left leg, and hold your Balancing Table Pose for 20 seconds to earn the maximum benefit.
Tips for Practicing Balancing Table Pose
Make sure you are moving slowly and maintaining a strong connection to your core while you extend your limbs. If you feel off balance, engaging your pelvic floor and pulling your belly towards your spine will help maintain your center of gravity while you practice the movement. As you extend your arms and legs, try to really push and reach as far as you can to feel the length.
Benefits of Balancing Table Pose
Balancing table pose is an excellent core stabilizing exercise. It may seem like a fairly simple exercise, but its wide-ranging benefits make it a great tool to use as a warm-up, cool down, or as a primary component of your exercise routine. It helps with core engagement and control and will improve your posture as you work on shoulder flexion and hip extension. Balancing table pose can be used before/after any physical activity, since it also activates your glutes and can help with hip mobility.
Balancing Table Pose Modifications & Variations
To modify the balancing table pose, instead of extending your opposite arm and leg at the same time, you can extend one limb at a time (e.g. only your right arm or only your right leg). This will help you focus more on the control in case you feel unbalanced extending 2 limbs at the same time.
To increase the intensity of balancing table pose, you can come into a hovering table pose by tucking your toes under and hovering your knees off the mat about 2 inches. While maintaining the hover, you will then extend your opposite arm and leg. This variation will certainly further challenge your leg and core strength.