Salamba setu bandha sarvangasana (supported bridge pose) is one of the best asana yoga poses to do towards the end of your practice or after a day at your desk, driving or cooking.
This pose is a heart opener as well as an inversion that allows your abdomen, chest and shoulders to expand and relax through a relieving stretch. It opens up a different section of the spine, right where we desk dwellers need it, and also supports the legs to relax by strapping them together. It has been known to reduce tension headaches and calm the mind.
Using a yoga bolster during this pose can help keep you feel well-supported and fully relaxed. It can help decompress hard-to-access parts of the spine and provide relief, especially if you spend your days typing away at a computer or looking down at your phone.
To perform a supported bridge pose:
1. Sit on your bolster, bending the knees with your feet on either side of the end of the bolster.
2. Take your yoga strap and secure your thighs using the D Ring strap. This will help your legs to relax rather than using your leg muscles to stay in the position
3. Lay back onto your bolster, having the top edge directly beneath the heart space allowing your neck and head to lie flat on the floor.
2. Ensure that the back of your neck is long, flat and level, leaving space between your chin and chest.
3. Keep your chest high and let your arms drop to the side with your palms open to the sky.
4. Keep your shoulders fully relaxed, your ankles and knees aligned and your feet evenly pressed to the ground.
5. Enhance the pose by adding a blanket to soften the ground beneath you, a strap around the thighs to relax the legs, and an eye pillow to rest the eyes