Increase flexibility on the spine and release tension using the support of props. The yoga dharma wheel is one of my favourite props. It has so many different uses and it helps us to reach deeper into the asanas. Backbends can sometimes feel a little bit difficult because on a physical level they require increased flexibility of the spine and this is an area of the body where we usually hold a lot of tension in. But more so, on a energetic level, backends require us to face issues and neglected feelings that we have buried deep down in the lumbar spine. We also have to open the heart centre (the chest and the shoulders) and this can be a process for some. Facing our emotional self and letting go of blocked feelings and emotional tension can feel scary. So it's always important to be gentle with yourself, your mind and body, and to allow the body to open and let go when it is ready without forcing it. This is where the yoga dharma wheel can be very helpful. It provides us with support to the spine, and its circular shape helps us to slowly melt the body on it, creating the back bend.
Seated with hands behind the head
Start slowly, in a comfortable seated position. Rest your lower back on the dharma wheel. Bend your elbows and bring the fingers from both hands together behind the head. With every inhale, extend the spine a little bit more, while on every exhale lean back even further.
Deep opening of the shoulders
As the spine starts to let go of tension and extends further, the shoulder open more also. Flex your elbows and bring your hands to the dharma wheel, gently melting your head backwards on the wheel. (if you have low blood pressure, just keep head in its neutral position)
Bent knees and deep opening of