Today’s question comes to us from Justin from FB
Hi, I’ve been trying to do a full wheel pose but I can’t seem to get myself off the ground. Is there anything I can do to help ease into the pose?
This is a great question. So I don’t usually teach wheel pose in Namaste Yoga classes because it is one of those poses that I think works better when you are working with a teacher with hands on assists and when you have more than an hour to prepare.
That being said there are some things that you can do to “ease” into the pose. First of all, instead of trying to get into the pose from the ground up, why not try coming into the pose from other directions. Try coming into the pose from down dog – like from Wild Thing pose. Try coming into the pose from standing by walking down the wall. This will probably start to show you very quickly what you need to be working on in the pose, which very often isn’t what you think you need to be working on in the pose.
Coming into wheel pose from the ground up requires strength in the legs, flexibility in the thoracic spine and mobility in your shoulder girdle. It also requires a lot of openness in the fronts of your hips. Not only that, but wheel pose requires a lot of flexibility in your wrists. That is a lot to coordinate in one pose. It is also helpful to work on a pose like bow pose/dhaurasana and get good at creating that shape which is very similar to wheel, just in a different orientation to gravity.
Here is an episode of Namaste Yoga where I did actually teach wheel pose:
Hope that all helps.