Advanced Yoga

Challenge Pose: 4 Steps to Lift into Firefly

Here's how to use the strength of your core and inner thighs to lift into this arm balance.

Watch the video on YOGAPEDIA

Tittibhasana (Insect or Firefly Pose)

tittibha = an insect
asana = pose

Benefit: Deepens hamstring and hip flexibility, opens the chest, and helps you find new strength and perspective.


1.Start in a standing forward fold with knees slightly bent and feet slightly wider than hip width. Grab your right calf with your right hand and press deeply into the leg to help work your shoulder behind the calf. Repeat the same action with your left leg and shoulder. Then toe-heel your feet closer together, but no closer than hip width.

2. Once both shoulders are neatly behind your legs, wrap your forearms around the sides of your shins and place your palms on top of your feet, fingers pointing forward. Hug your upper thighs around your torso like you are squeezing a ThighMaster, and keep your head heavy.

3. With active thighs, keep hugging in toward the midline. Bend your knees deeper. Place your palms on the ground behind your feet and drop your buttocks until your arms create a throne to sit on. Extend your gaze forward. Lift the feet. Keep squeezing the sides of your body with your thighs, and firm your forearms.

4. Drop your seat even farther toward your wrists as you lift your lower belly and hug your thighs around your arms. Once your hips are set, work toward straightening your legs. Keep your sternum lifted, collarbones wide, and gaze forward. Shift your shoulder heads back and lift the gaze.

See also in YOGAPEDIA

5 Steps to Master Standing Forward Bend

Achieve Uttanasana the Safe Way with these Modifications

3 Poses to Prep for Firefly