Table Pose is a deep back bend and it should only be practiced once you’ve warmed up your body by dancing your ass off, performing a strength and conditioning routine or yoga routine.

If you haven’t warmed up properly, you can cause back, shoulder or neck pain.

It’s important to warm your: hip flexors, core muscles and shoulders.


lie supine on the floor and bring your heels in towards your sit bones. Place your hands on the mat next to your head with the fingers pointing down the body. Press the feet into the mat firmly and draw the tailbone towards the backs of the knees, it should feel like your pelvis is a bowl of water and you’re spilling behind you. This will lift the hips as in bridge pose, hold it here for a round of breath.

When you feel ready, press the hands firmly into the floor and firm the shoulder blades against the back to help lift the upper body off the floor. This part requires a lot of strength for the push but also a lot of openness in the shoulder joint to help facilitate the upwards movement. It’s important to feel quality movement in your body, look for areas of pain and tension. Adjust yourself to ease the pain and reduce tension. It’s helpful to visualize tense areas being deflated like a balloon full of air.

Once up in the pose, press your feet into the floor, keep you inner thighs rolling downwards, make sure the lower abdomen is engaged to help support the lower back and either let the head hang backwards or lift it slightly to look down at the floor.

Final point is that the knees and feet tend to turn outwards in the pose, which compresses the lower back and can cause pain or discomfort. To begin with you can keep a brick squeezed in between your knees or use a belt around your thighs at hip width.

Easing yourself out of Crab Pose is important. To exit the pose, firm your shoulders down your back and start to bend your elbows. Allow your head to rest on the floor and carefully roll down your spine to the mat.

It’s nice to your give your back a bit of love after all that work. So hug knees to your chest, keep the back of your neck nice and long and relaxed. You can follow this up with a Supine twist.

Hold off from practicing this pose if you suffer from any back or shoulder pain / injuries, it could aggravate the issue further.

Also if you’re suffering from headache or diarrhoea, this may not be the pose for you that day, you wouldn’t want to shit yourself!



William Nelsen