Alternatively, lie on your back with your upper back on a sturdy folded blanket, your head resting on the mat, so the blanket ends in the hollow of the neck. As you exhale, draw your lower belly into your spine and firm your back into the floor.
Press your arms into the floor, inhale and lift your legs over your head towards the floor. Stretch out through the heels.
Walk your shoulders towards each other, keep your chin slightly up and place your hands on your lower back for support.
Press through the arms, shoulders, and feet if they are on the floor.
Keep the spine long, tailbone reaching to the ceiling, hips over your shoulders.
Stay for 5 to 10 breaths.
To come out of the pose, release your hands and bring your arms back on the floor next to you, palms down and roll out of the pose as you exhale.
The function of the blanket is to lift the shoulders in order to keep the back of the neck from flattening too much. You may need more than one blanket – make sure they are neatly folded and stacked.
You can keep your knees bent as you bring your legs over your head towards the floor.
You can also leave your legs in the air or support your feet with a chair.
It’s a good idea to have a yoga teacher help you when doing this pose for the first time.