Breaking Down Tree Pose
1. Tree pose can be as basic or as advanced as you want it to be. The engaged and stretched muscles are the same in all variations - the only thing that changes is your foot height! Bring your heel to the inner ankle of the engaged standing leg. Your tailbone is shooting down toward the floor, chest is pulled through and shoulders are relaxed.
2. Slide your foot slowly up your standing leg until it rests on your calf. This takes more balance so make sure to begin to engage your core. Bring your hands to heart center and press your palms energetically together for more stability.
3. Using your hand, take your raised foot and place it inside the inner thigh of the standing leg. Never place your foot on your knee - it must be on the inner thigh! To keep balance, pin your hips in towards each other as you keep your shoulders relaxed. Find a focal point at eye level. Press your foot into your standing leg thigh as you press your outer thigh of your standing leg towards the other side. This create resistances towards the midline!
4. Feeling balanced? Bring your hands energetically upwards and bring your gaze with it! This is the peak of tree pose and is a great exercise to build balance.
If you fall out of the pose, simply go back into it! It’s no big deal if you lose your balance! Yoga is all about being mindful and having fun!