How Can I Modify My Plow Pose If I Have Big Breasts?

Kaisa Kapanen
How Can I Modify My Plow Pose If I Have Big Breasts?

If you have been blessed with bigger breasts, you'll know that some yoga poses are just not that accessible. Halasana, or Plow Pose, is one of those.

It is a challenging pose to begin with, big boobs or not. And if you happen to have large breasts, trying to get into the pose can feel like you're being suffocated. Not really the feeling one should have with yoga, and the question is, should you even try?

Sure the pose opens the neck, shoulders and the back, stimulates the thyroid gland, and is great for better sleep and stress management. But is it worth the hassle?

To Plow or Not?

Honestly, is this even a possibility? Well, it depends. For some with a very full bosom, the full version of the pose may never be comfortable (heck, big breasts or not, it may not be!), which is perfectly OK. Not every yoga pose needs to be accessible to us, since we all have poses that our bodies are just not designed for.

Yoga is not about trying our hardest to get into these poses no matter what, but rather using yoga to help us where we are today. It's like clothing — instead of trying to squeeze our butts into size 2 jeans and  feeling miserable because we cannot, we might as well clothe our body the way it needs to be clothed, buy the size 14, and get on with our lives.

In many cases we can improve, stretch, gain strength, and eventually achieve the full version of a pose, but in equally as many cases this is not attainable due to bone structure, body proportions (think length of torso versus arms and legs), and yes, size of chest.

No matter how much you try and practice this pose, your chest is not going to shrink. Considering you can hold this pose for anywhere from 1-5 minutes gives you an indication of the level of comfort you should be feeling in it.

Some Modifications to Consider

If you decide to go for it, here are some ways to modify the pose to make it more accessible:

  • Elevate your shoulders with blankets or towels. To give more space, place a few folded blankets on the floor, and lay with your shoulders a few inches from the edge of the blankets. As you come up, your shoulders are coming closer to the edge of the blanket, while your head and neck are off the blanket. Bigger breasts, more blankets.
  • Use a chair for assistance. This will give you the benefits of the pose while giving more space for the upper body. Instead of trying to land your toes on the floor, you can land your toes on a chair. You can also go further and rest your upper thighs on the seat of the chair (for this you'll need a chair that doesn't have a bar between the front legs, as your head would be underneath the seat, shoulders close to the chair legs as you go up. Also the chair needs to have space for your legs to go through). Your back should remain straight.
  • You could also try tying a belt on top of your chest before you assume the pose. Might keep the bosom at bay a little better.

Maybe the best lesson from Halasana is to accept our body the way it is, honoring what it can do, and not judging it for the things it cannot do. What will you focus on? The choice is yours.