Backbending Sequence to Wheel Pose

Author: Natalie Basch


Today we are focusing on backbends! I love backbends! They are invigorating, energizing, heart-opening, and I always feel a rush of energy surge through my body when coming out of them.


This sequence prepares us for wheel pose. The swing acts as extra support for the lower back – like training wheels on a bicycle.


The trick with backbends is to find the optimum balance between relaxing the lower back but also engaging the lower abdominal to keep the lower back supported. Flexibility and strength is needed to do wheel pose. And with the swing, this can be practised safely. To prepare, I work through some spinal exercises: hanging cow, cat & cow and cobra pose.


NOTE: my body was already warm as I did a 45 min workout before I got into the swing, so make SURE you are sufficiently warmed up before trying this! Have fun and be gentle on your body – patience is key. My shoulders and heart need some more work and opening, but with the swing I can gradually build on that without risking injuries – training wheels!


Please make sure you have attended at least an Airo class, workshop or training before trying this at home.