Yoga Practice

Prep Poses for Inversions: Yoga Practice Tips + Video to Defy Gravity

How to gain strength, flexibility, and confidence for inversion yoga poses. Here, the prep tips and video you need to defy gravity.

Inversions provide physical, mental, and emotional benefits. But they also require strength, flexibility, and confidence to reverse your normal relationship with gravity. Here, the yoga practice tips + video to help you get upside down.

Avoid the Common Mistakes

yogis doing inversions on a beach

Posture problems previously corrected in yoga can resurface when students begin work on inversions. Here’s how to make those adjustments without hurting yourself.

VIDEO: Build Strength

Work on your upper back, create space in your shoulders, and foster the confidence to prepare for inversions.

Upside-Down Prep Pose

Dolphin Pose

Dolphin opens and strengthens your upper body, making it the perfect prep pose for inversions or a substitute for those moments when you’re not ready to fly your legs above your head.

Start with a Shouldstand

supported shoulder stand pose

Salamba Sarvangasana

Supported Shoulderstand promotes circulation, calms the nervous system, and improves immune function—a good kickstart pose for inversions.

Build a Forearm Balance

How to practice the feathered peacock yoga pose

Build up to Pincha Mayurasana—a pose that requires a courageous, open heart, not to mention flexibility in the upper back and shoulders with strong forearm balance.

Go Deeper: Supported Headstand

Rina Jakubowicz Sirsasana

Salamba Sirsasana

Feeling confident? Try a Headstand variation with extra support. Set up your mat near a corner or practice with your back and hands close to a wall.

Q&A: Am I ready?

Yoga expert Bethany Lyons explains the tell-tale signs you’re ready to try an Advanced Inversion.