Crow Pose Gives Me Arm Bruises — Is This Normal?

Kaisa Kapanen
Crow Pose Gives Me Arm Bruises — Is This Normal?

When we start to balance on our hands, it's a victory on its own. The first time you can hold a Crow Pose for more than one second is a joyous moment! It marks a new phase in your yoga practice, and just makes you feel incredibly strong and capable! You cannot wait to get more.

What happens if you start finding bruises on your triceps from practicing? It's quite common, but not really a nice feeling for you in and out of the pose. So why does it happen, and what do you do to avoid this?

Bruising in Crow Pose: Is There a Way to Avoid It?

Crow Pose takes a considerable amount of upper body strength, as well as core strength. Essentially your core should hold you up in the pose, instead of having your legs just resting on your arms. Yoga poses and our desire to get to them should never be physically harmful to us.

If we cannot get to a pose with a certain level of steadiness and ease, we need to step back, take it easy, and prepare. Perform preparatory poses, build up strength, and try again.

Some Tips to Consider

  • Try core strengthening poses such as Boat Pose and Plank Pose. Strengthen the arms with push-ups.
  • Instead of placing your knees directly on your triceps, place your knee slightly on the outside of the upper arms. Press your legs against your arms, and equally importantly, press your arms against your legs so the back stays nice and engaged.
  • Don't be afraid to shift your weight forward. Make sure your wrists and elbows are in line, and that you are not bending the elbows towards the sides. Elbows out may provide a seemingly easy resting spot for your legs, but is not safe for your wrists. So keep the elbows in and hands parallel to the front of the mat.
  • Engage the core! The more you are relying on the core to lift you up, the less you will need to rest your legs on your arms.
  • Keep your gaze forward, not underneath you, and not towards the hands. Trust your body, keep your eyes where you want to go, and your body will follow.

If you tend to bruise easily, you might be subject to some marks in the beginning, no matter what you do. No yogi can fly into this pose without first falling on his or her face a few (hundred) times. But as you develop more upper body and core strength, things will take off!