[Pose Of the Week] Little Bridge Pose (Intermediate)

Build strength in your glutes, core, and more with Little Bridge Pose.

Little Bridge Pose (Dwi Pada Pitham) is an intermediate-to-advanced version of the classic Bridge Pose. In this variation,  the legs are extended rather than bent, which makes the gluteal and thigh muscles work harder while holding the pose. This is a great way to tone and tighten your backside, while also strengthening the back, legs, and core muscles. It also realigns and provides a good stretch for the neck, chest, and spine. This pose also includes a chin lock, which may help to stimulate the thyroid and boost metabolism, and it is believed to calm the mind and relieve mild depression.

Be careful to keep your neck and head centered in the pose to avoid neck strain. If you are unable to hold your hips up, go back to regular Bridge Pose until you build enough strength to try this version. You may also modify the pose by supporting your hips with blocks or a bolster. For an additional challenge, you may also lift one leg while balancing in the pose, or cross your ankles.

Those with or recovering from a hernia, ulcers, or any neck injury should avoid this pose.

How to Do Little Bridge Pose:

  • Begin on the back with the knees bent and feet flat on the mat, hips width apart. This is the start position.
  • Roll the arms and shoulders under the body. Clasp the hands together. Flatten out the neck and back of the head. Tuck the chin towards the chest.
  • On the inhale, press the foot soles and arms down.
  • Lift the hips skywards on the exhale. (This is Bridge Pose.)
  • Push the chest towards the chin, arching the back.
  • Extend one leg and then the other along the mat, heels pressing into the ground.
  • Hold the pose for 5 breaths.
  • To exit the pose, step one foot at a time back to start position. Unclasp the arms and slowly lower the body down, one vertebrae at a time.
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