How To Do Tripod

By: Chris Freytag, CPT

Chloe Freytag demonstrating Tripod Pose in a black tank top and yoga pants

Tripod is an arm balance pose that strengthens your core and upper body strength while challenging your ability to breathe and be still during balance. Tripod is a basic arm balance pose. If you learn how to do Tripod you will set yourself up for more challenging arm balance poses in the future. Poses such as Crow or Headstand both originate in Tripod pose and advance from there.

At first glance it can appear that you are resting your body weight on your head in Tripod and using your arms to keep you from falling. The truth is that you achieve success in Tripod when you can learn to keep the weight off of the top of your head and use your upper body and core muscles to hold you up. The head is just there to keep you from tipping over. Try to keep as much weight off the head as possible. Pulling your belly up and in will be the key.

Tripod is also a pose of balance. Tripod pose is a great way to practice using your yoga breathing while your body is under great challenge and distress. Be patient and take this pose one step at a time. Be prepared to fall over and, if you do, just try it again! Practice is good for the soul! And remember, Tripod pose is just the beginning of more arm balance poses to come. Keep working on Tripod and before you know it, your head will no longer be on the floor and Crow pose will be yours!

1) Begin on feet, crouched down with tailbone between ankles and hands in prayer at chest.

2) Fan hands open and place them flat on floor in front of toes. Keep elbows slightly bent.

3) Squeeze inner thighs against the back of your arms, tighten abdominals and begin tipping your weight forward so shoulders are over hands.

4) Gently place crown of head on floor and lift feet off the floor to balance.

5) Hold and breathe for 30 seconds.

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