Mountain Pose (Tadasana)
1. Mountain pose may seem easy, but it actually takes muscle engagement to get the right form! In the "Before" photo, my feet are turned out and my legs are not engaged. Remember to keep your feet hip-width apart and parallel and lift up through the arches of your feet. Imagine pulling your quads towards the sky and spinning your inner thighs towards each other! Not only is this a great leg workout but your foundation will be strong for more advanced poses!
2. My core is a mess in the "Before" photo! To get a true neutral spine and an engaged core you have to do a "Tuck." essentially a tuck is bringing your frontal hip points towards your rib cage and then pulling your shoulders back and down. I envision knitting up my front side and pulling down my back side. Your abs should always be engaged! (practice your tuck at home!)
3. I have noodle arms and my neck is slumping down. Think about rising up through the crown of your head and shooting energy out through your fingertips! These counter actions will help pull your shoulders back and feel yummy on your upper spine!
PROP MODIFICATIONS: WALL, BLOCK
I practice this pose against a wall to feel everything align and force my core to tuck. Also, placing a block between your legs helps enforce leg engagement!