If you’re looking to increase your strength, balance, and flexibility (while developing your skills), here are some of the more advanced yoga poses to try.
Are you a seasoned yogi with an impressive repertoire of poses? Or are you still working on mastering Corpse Pose or Mountain Pose?
Regardless of your level of experience, there’s no doubt that some yoga poses are more difficult than others, but they’re all great for your health.
So which poses are the most difficult? Here’s a look at some of the most difficult yoga poses and why they’re so hard to master.
To note: If you’re still improving your yoga practice or are totally new to these poses, working with a seasoned yoga instructor is the best way to learn these poses correctly (and make sure you do them safely). security !).
Chin Stand is an advanced inversion pose that combines strong arm balance and backbend. You’ll need strong arms and shoulders to lift your body off the ground, as well as epic levels of concentration and coordination.
You will be rewarded with increased upper body strength, a strong core, improved focus and concentration, and less stress.
How it’s made: Begin in a plank pose. Lower your chest and chin to the mat, keeping your hips elevated. Next, engage your core and lift one leg skyward, then the other, while resting your body on your hands and chin.
Be sure to maintain your body’s balance and alignment so you don’t fall.
Crow Pose means you will be balancing on your arms. You will need a lot of upper body strength and coordination to lift your hips and legs off the ground and into the air. This is why it is one of the difficult yoga poses.
The benefits of Crow Pose include strengthening your arms and core and opening up your hips.
How it’s made: Start in a low squat with your feet hip-width apart and your hands on the mat in front of you. Place your knees over the back of your arms and lean forward, lifting your feet off the floor and pressing your palms firmly to the mat.
One-Legged Crow Pose is an advanced variation of Crow Pose.
This full body pose is a tricky variation that will energize your entire body and help improve your balance. To research suggests that yoga can even improve your thinking skills and brain health.
How it’s made: Start with Crow. Then, pull one knee to your chest, shift your weight forward, and extend the opposite leg skyward.
The handstand is an advanced inversion pose that requires considerable strength and balance to perform. You will improve your coordination and core strength by lifting your legs.
How it’s made: Start in downward facing dog with your feet hip-width apart. Then slowly walk your hands forward until they are directly under your shoulders. Lift one leg at a time into the air and press your palms firmly to the mat as you balance.
Be careful not to arch your back or let your hips sag. You may want to train with pads and a soft surface in case you fall.
Scorpion Handstand is a variation of handstand, and it’s a badass that requires supreme balance, strength, and flexibility.
How it’s made: Start in a headstand position with your butt facing a wall. Touch the wall with your toes, then gradually move them towards your head until your knees are bent.
The Headstand is an advanced inversion pose where you literally stand on your head. The pose requires a lot of strength and balance.
How it’s made: Start in tabletop position with your hands and knees on the mat. Lower until the top of your head rests between your hands. Push your butt up, straighten your legs, slowly bring your feet closer to your head, then lift your hips into the air and extend your straight legs. (Easy, right? 😅)
Take your time balancing yourself and have someone spot you if you think you might fall.
Like other inversion poses, the forearm support helps improve circulation and encourages blood to travel from the extremities toward the heart. And, of course, it requires solid balance, a strong upper body, and stellar core strength.
How it’s made: Begin in Dolphin Pose and walk your feet towards your hands. Raise one leg to the sky, then the other. Remember to engage your core and press your forearms into the mat.
The Standing Hand to Big Toe pose is a stretching, bending, and balancing movement that helps stabilize your core and open your hips. In addition, to research suggests that performing standing yoga movements can increase self-esteem and have an energizing effect.
How it’s made: Start in a standing position. Shift your weight to your left foot. Lift your right foot off the floor and hug the knee to your body with both hands.
Once in balance, wrap two fingers of your right hand around your right big toe, extend your leg forward, and swing it to the side. Raise your left arm for balance. Repeat on the opposite leg.
Compass Pose is a seated twisting motion that stretches and opens your hamstrings, chest, and glutes. You need to be very flexible for this pose (like, “put your feet behind your head” flexible).
How it’s made: Start in a seated position. Try to position your right leg back and over your right shoulder. Place the right hand on the ground to balance yourself and grab the right foot with the left hand. Open your chest and feel the energy flow through your body. Repeat on the other side.
Split Pose helps with strength and balance while stretching your hamstrings and opening your hips. If you haven’t already guessed by the name, it’s basically a classic split.
How it’s made: Start in a low lunge with your back knee down and hands on either side of your hips. Move your back foot so the top is resting on the mat and your toes are pointing. Slowly slide the front foot outward while pointing the toes. Feel the deep stretch in your hamstrings and hip flexors.
Remember not to push the movement because you risk injuring your lower back and leg tendons.
The Eight Angle Pose is one of those yoga pretzel poses that too requires a ton of balance. This is by far (literally) one of the most difficult yoga poses and brings head-to-toe engagement, especially in the arms and inner thighs.
How it’s made: Sit down with your legs in front of you. Wrap your right leg over your right shoulder, then place the left leg in front of the right hand.
Hook your ankles, lean forward, and lift your hips while squeezing your inner thighs toward each other and stretching your legs away from your body. Repeat on the other side.
Mermaid Pose looks cute and you will look like Ariel posing on a rock, but it’s not a day at the beach. This pose requires a lot of coordination and flexibility that you feel as it opens up your hips, chest and shoulders.
How it’s made: Start in Downward Dog. Next, move your right knee behind your right wrist and your right heel towards your left hip. Step your left foot behind you. You will now be in Pigeon Pose.
Rotate your body to the left and try to grab the top of your left foot and bring it down into the crook of your elbow. To complete the movement, raise your right hand up and behind you and hold your left hand.
A particularly difficult yoga pose for anyone with poor balance, Dancer Pose requires great balance skills and flexibility. It will open up your chest, shoulders, and hips while strengthening your legs.
How it’s made: From a standing position, shift your weight to your right foot, then lift your left foot behind you and hold it with your left hand. While holding the top of your left foot, lift it back and skyward. Repeat on the other side.
Is this the hardest yoga move? The jury is out, but this is one of the most challenging yoga poses for the sho. You will need extreme flexibility in your hips, as well as balance and strength. Also, since yoga moves like this require strong mental focus and mindfulness, they can help diffuse anxiety and stress.
How it’s made: Start in a one-arm plank with both feet on the mat. Place your lower leg behind your head. Then, raise your free arm and your face skyward from this position.
Some people also start by putting their leg behind their head first (seems *much* easier 🤔) and rolling onto a side plank.
Is it break dancing or yoga? One-Handed Tree Pose is not too safe. This is one of the most difficult yoga poses and requires superhero-level balance and strength. Oh, and it’s reversed!
How it’s made: Start handstand (yes, you beginning in a hard pose). Then, spread those legs and slowly lift one of your hands off the mat. You need to balance yourself with your legs, and your wrists and elbows provide stability.
You can also start this pose by leaning against a wall.
There you have it, 15 of the most difficult yoga poses. But don’t be discouraged if they seem out of reach (literally)! With regular practice, you’ll slowly build your strength and flexibility, and before long you might be able to master them like a pro.
Remember that yoga should be a challenging yet enjoyable experience, not a competition. So always go at your own pace, focus on your breathing and listen to your body.
Remember to warm up and never try to force your way into a pose that is not right for you. If you feel pain, back off and try something else. You don’t want to hurt yourself.
Above all, have fun and enjoy the trip!