One of my most beloved poses has always been Half Moon (Ardha Chandrasana), but while I find it to be energizing and comforting, I understand why some people don't share the same sentiment. If you don't lay a strong foundation before floating into the pose, it can feel unstable, and you may be worried about falling over. It's important to trust your body's strength, and like most other things, practice, practice, practice — each time you shift into the shape it gets a little easier and cozier. If Half Moon has been a struggle for you, here are three tiny tips that I've found to make a big difference in my practice.
- Let your hand help: Setting up your front hand at the top of your mat will help you set up the pose strong. Many times people keep their hand too close to their front foot when first coming into the pose and end up toppling over. If this sounds like an issue that plagues you in this balancing posture, shift your hand up a few inches forward and parallel to your standing foot, so you can lengthen completely through the spine. This will help you lay a standard foundation so you can float right into Half Moon.
- Engage your whole bod: Distributing your weight evenly in body will allow you to take the full expression of the pose. Keep a little microbend in your rooted, standing leg to prevent hyperextending your knee, and keep your back leg strong in order to stay stable. And don't forget your strong core! Keep those muscles engaged to avoid collapsing into your front hand.
- Activate your back foot: Finding balance in the pose can be a bit of a struggle, but this tip can be a real lifesaver. Once you're in the shape, either flex or point through the ball of the foot of your extended leg. If you're flexing, pretend you're pushing against a wall. Engaging your lifted foot will really help you stay balanced.
Do you love Half Moon? Tell me below!
Photo courtesy of Jenny Sugar