9 Steps To Teach Pigeon Pose Using One Of These 6 Marvellously Memorable Themes
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Pick A Pigeon Theme
Here are some ideas to theme your next class around “Pigeon Pose”.
The Pigeon is the embodiment of the maternal instinct. Home and family are very dear and meaningful to those with this power animal. The pigeon’s brood consists of two eggs. Two is a symbol of the creative feminine energies. When practicing Pigeon Pose, remember to practice on both (two) your legs and allow your creative energies to flow freely.
The Pigeon represents peace of the deepest kind. When practicing Pigeon Pose, you reduce the noise emanating from your troubled thoughts, and find renewal in the silence of your mind. In these moments of stillness we are able to feel deep gratitude for the simple things in life. More peace is needed in our hearts and the hearts of nations. When practicing Pigeon Pose, you fill your heart with peace.
A 10-year study carried out by Oxford University concluded that pigeons use roads and motorways to navigate, in some cases even changing direction at motorway junctions. Other theories include navigation by use of the earth’s magnetic field, visual clues such as landmarks, the sun and even low frequency seismic waves. Whatever the truth, this unique ability makes the pigeon a very special bird. When practicing Pigeon Pose, you are better able to be able to use your feelings (heart) to navigate the roads and motorways within your mind.
The pigeon is revered in India with huge flocks numbering many thousands of birds being fed daily at Hindu temples.
Peaceful Warrior (war hero)
The Pigeon has been used to great effect during wartime. In both the First and Second World Wars the pigeon saved hundreds of thousands of human lives by carrying messages across enemy lines. Sometimes we need to take action to get out of dire situations. Sometimes we need to send a message from our subconscious to our conscious mind to take action. When practicing Pigeon Pose in silence, you allow the subconscious messages to bubble to the surface of the mind. You can then use ‘the message’ given to you.
Come up with your own
Think about what pigeons are known for such as: “Bringers of peace and love”, “femininity”, “maternity”, “being spirit messengers”, and “gentleness”.
Teach Pigeon Facts
Giving interesting facts about pigeons while your students are practicing pigeon pose, subconsciously releases pigeon qualities into their minds…
The pigeon has side-mounted eyes, unlike us who have forward facing eyes. As pigeons have monocular vision rather than binocular vision they bob their heads for depth of perception. The pigeon’s eyes function much better with stationary images and therefore as the pigeon takes a step forward the head is temporarily left behind. The next step jerks the head forward again and so on. This allows the bird to orient itself.
Football Match Results
In England, prior to the days of telegraphs, pigeons were often taken to football matches and released to carry home the result of the game.
In Roman times the pigeon was used to carry results of the Olympic Games. This is why white doves are released at the start of the Olympic Games today.
Teach The Benefits
- Deep stretch for hips
- Stretches thighs, groins, psoas, abdomen, chest, shoulders and neck
- Stimulates abdominal organs
- Opens shoulders & chest
Teach The Modifications
If you can’t descend the front leg hip to floor, place a folded blanket underneath the hip for support.
Teach The Precautions
- Sacroiliac injury
- Ankle injury
- Knee injury
- Tight hips or thighs
Teach Pigeon Pose
1) Begin on all fours with knees directly below hips & hands slightly ahead of shoulders. Slide right knee forward to back of right wrist; bring right foot to the front of left knee. Outside of right shin will rest on floor. Slowly slide left leg back, straightening knee and descending front of thigh to floor. Lower outside of right buttock to floor. Position right heel just in front of left hip.
2) The right knee can angle slightly to right, outside the line of the hip. Exhale and lay torso down on inner right thigh for a few breaths. Stretch arms forward.
3) Slide hands back toward front shin & push fingertips firmly to floor. Lift torso away from thigh. Lengthen lower back by pressing tailbone down and forward, and lift pubis toward navel. Roll left hip point toward right heel & lengthen left front groin.
4) Bring hands to top of pelvis. Push down. Against this pressure, lift lower rim of rib cage. Back ribs lift a little faster than front.
5) Stay for 30 to 60 seconds (or as long as is comfortable).
6) With hands back on floor slide left knee forward, exhale & lift up and back into Downward Facing Dog. Take a few breaths, drop the knees to all-fours on another exhalation & repeat with legs reversed.
Teach The Beginner Variations
Thread The Needle Pose is a great variation for beginners….
Thread the Needle Pose
Thread the Needle Pose Variation
Another Thread the Needle Pose Variation
And Another Thread the Needle Pose Variation
Teach The Advanced Variations
These are great variation for intermediate or advanced students….
Double Pigeon Pose
Flying Pigeon Pose
King Pigeon Pose
Would You Like More Yoga Class Handouts
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