Youth Postures


Ages 11 to 17 I. HALF MOON POSE – 3 parts Part 1 – Side Bend

How to perform the posture:

  1. Stand facing the judges with feet together, bring arms overhead with palms together, arms straight, elbows locked. Legs straight and knees locked.  Hips forward, upper body and arms back, chin up.  Weight in the heels.
  2. Without bending arms or legs bend body to the right in a straight line.  Push hips out to the left as far as possible.  Keep both hips and shoulders facing forward to create a lateral stretch for the spine. Look straight ahead.
  3. Bring body down while continuously pushing hips out.  Hold deepest stretch for at least 5 counts. Then return to center.
  4. Repeat other side, hold for 5 counts, then return to center. When finished turn to face the side and begin the third part.


What the judges will look for:

  1. Palms all the way together.  Elbows and knees locked.
  2. Maximum stretching on side of body.
  3. Hips and shoulders facing forward evenly.
  4. Bending sideways in a straight line, without leaning forward or leaning back.
  5. Stillness while in the posture.

Part 2 – Back Bend

How to perform the posture:

  1. Stand with feet together, arms overhead with palms together.  Release head all the way back.  Bring arms back to bend the entire spine.
  2. Keep arms and legs straight.  Push upper body back.  Push hips, thighs and stomach forward.
  3. Hold at maximum backbend for at least 5 counts.
  4. Come up with arms overhead.

Note: Back bend should be done with the side facing the judges

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What the judges will look for:

  1. Head all the way back.
  2. Arms all the way back – arms touching ears.
  3. Entire spine bending/compressing – not just lower spine.
  4. Feet flat - weight on the heels.
  5. Legs straight-knees locked, arms straight-elbows locked.

Part 3 – Hands to Feet Pose

How to perform the posture:

  1. With arms overhead bend forward with arms and head together. Place hands under heels with 5 fingers together on each hand and little fingers touching side by side.
  2. Pull on heels to stretch body down.  Elbows behind the legs on calf muscle, arms touching with the legs. Keep stomach on thighs, chest on knees and face on shins. Straighten legs and lock knees.  Stretch upper body down to the floor, head towards the feet.
  3. Hold at maximum forward bend for at least 5 counts.
  4. Come up with arms and head together.

Note: Hands to Feet Pose should be done with the side facing the judges.

 

What the judges will look for:

  1. Stretching of the legs from the coccyx to the toes, stretching of the spine from the coccyx to the head.
  2. Body touching with legs – no gap.
  3. Legs straight and knees locked.
  4. Elbows behind legs on calf muscle.
  5. Arm biceps contracted, continuous pulling, continuous stretching.

II. FISH POSE

How to perform the posture:

  1. Sit in lotus pose with the side of the body facing the judges.
  2. Lie back and bring hands overhead by shoulders, palms on the floor, fingers pointing towards shoulders. Push off hands so chest lifts up and bring head towards butt. Place the top of the head on the floor. Bring head as close to butt as possible in order to create maximum compression.
  3. Grab the foot from the top with the hand, palms down and elbows to the floor.  Keep both knees on the floor.
  4. Look up towards forehead.


What the judges will look for:

  1. Spinal compression, including symmetry and depth.
  2. Hold the top of the foot with the hand – palms facing down.
  3. Knees on the floor, elbows on the floor.
  4. Top of the head on the floor.
  5. Chest lifted.

III. STRETCHING POSE

How to perform the posture:

  1. Sit with spine upright with the side of the body towards the judges and both legs fully extended forward, feet together.
  2. Grab the big toes from the top, with the middle and index fingers together, palms facing each other.
  3. Pull on the toes.  Feet together and flexed.  Legs straight, knees locked and heels in the air.
  4. With a flat back, stretch upper body forward from the lower spine.  Touch the elbows on the floor along side the calf muscles. Bring the body down, stomach on the thighs, chest on the knees, forehead reaching towards the toes.


What the judges will look for:

  1. Continuous stretching from the coccyx to the forehead. For full points, the forehead touches the big toe (not the thumb or hand/wrist).
  2. Legs straight and thigh muscles contracted – minimum gap between back of the knees and the floor.
  3. Feet together.
  4. Feet flexed.
  5. Spine straight.
  6. Stomach on the thighs, chest down.
  7. Elbows on the floor.
  8. Forehead in line with the toes, face down, eyes looking forward.

IV. SPINE TWIST

How to perform the posture:

  1. Sit on the floor with both legs in front of you, side facing the judges.  Bend left knee, knee on the floor and left heel touching side of right buttock, left toes pointed behind you.  Bring right leg over the left, put right foot on the floor to the left of your knee – right heel touching left knee.
  2. Bring left arm to the right and over right knee.  Press the elbow against the right knee, push the knee back and grab the kneecap with your palm. Put the right arm behind your back and reach all the way around until you can touch/grab the left thigh.
  3. Turn your head to the right and twist your spine, shoulders and whole torso turn to the right as much as possible.
  4. Exhale and hold.

Note: Either leg can be on the floor. In the final position chest should face the judges.

 

What the judges will look for:

  1. Spine upright/straight, perpendicular to the floor, and twisting from top to bottom.
  2. Shoulders and head level to floor with chin over shoulder.
  3. Bent knee heel touching the opposite hip – but not sitting on heel.
  4. Toes of bottom leg pointed.
  5. Knee, hand and heel together with wrist straight.
  6. Fingertips grabbing the thigh around back.
  7. Bottom knee and both buttocks touching the floor.
 
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