Nakrasana - Crocodile Pose

Crocodile Pose
Crocodile Pose
This pose is sometimes called a ‘Four Limbed Stick Pose (Chaturanga Dandasana) Never mind, all the many crocodile fanatics out there will be happy with Nakrasana I guess!

The pose resembles a halfway stop point in a good old-fashioned ‘push up’. Stopping in this position is quite taxing when held anything beyond a few seconds for most folks, but I guess the hardcore flow guys who like to add in a few hundred in every class will laugh at our 30 secs/minute time guideline :-)

As can be seen, the pose tones the abdominals, the shoulders, the legs, and the back of the arms (Triceps) hands should be flat as possible on the mat, the chin is tucked in to protect the neck, legs are firm and held dynamic, as is the stomach and arms. Connect the breathing with smooth steady breaths. Please do not hold the breath in this pose – holding will dramatically alter the energy flow in the body, and not in a positive way!

Danger areas are to collapse the lower back and so ‘sag’ in the lumbar spine. Head up may be a problem as well. The rotator cuffs in the shoulder girdle also need to be looked after. Don’t hold the pose too long to start, rather build up your timings and work to develop even strength throughout the body. Further, some folks may need to only slightly bend the arms in the beginning. It really is important to avoid bending the lower back, especially when coming up out of the pose.

Beginners can work on the standard ‘Straight Arm Plank Pose’ shown and then start with ? small bends in the arms for a few seconds at a time and then gradually build up.

The posture sequences well, hence the delight of various Astangi’s and other hardcore ‘flow’ folks.

It is nice to jump down into the pose from a standing forward bend or down dog pose.

Often found in various types of Sun salutations (Surya Namaskar), the posture can be performed in a sequence or as a stand-alone Asana. If doing the latter, make sure you add a variety of other strengthening poses in as well as stretching and balancing postures.

All said and done, the posture is great for building stamina and strength in the body generally. Just bear in mind the arms development is not Bi-ceps (the larger front arm muscles so many folks delight in building up to show others) However regular practice will generally tone the body quite nicely.



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