Ardha Chandrasana Yoga Pose Adjustments- Half Moon Assists
Balancing postures can be tricky to adjust. You want to be mindful when assisting your student in Ardha Chandrasana or Half Moon Pose making sure you are helping them and not throwing them off balance. Use of props or support can be helpful in this particular balancing posture.
Assistance from the Wall
If you have the wall space in your studio to accommodate all your students then this might be a great option to experience the posture from a different perspective.
The first option is to have your students line up against the wall with their backs to it. Enter the pose anyway you choose, I suggest from Warrior II in this case. Have your students lean against the wall with the same alignment you would cue in the center of the room. By leaning into the wall it encourages the top hip to stack on top of the bottom hip, thus opening the hips deeper. This is also helpful for prenatal students whose balance may be off because of the extra body weight they are carrying.
The second option is to place the foot of the lifted leg at the wall. By having the flexed foot pressing against the wall the student is encouraged to activate the extended leg, sending more energy through the lifted leg not only relying on the standing leg to do all the work. Here the common cue of “Flex your back foot like you are pressing it against the wall” actually becomes your reality.
Assistance from a Block
Blocks are very useful in this posture. In fact, even for students who have a secure balance, I offer this option so they can feel the extra space created in the hip crease of the standing leg. Have your student place the block about six inches in front of the standing leg and rest your finger tips on the support. Be mindful that they do not dump their entire weight into the block to avoid stressing the shoulder. The block is bringing the ground closer to your student to create more stability and openness in the hips.
Assistance from the Teacher
Assist the student only if they look fairly stable in the pose. Come stand behind them bringing on of your thighs or hips (depending on your proportions to your students) against their standing leg to provide support incase they loose their balance. Take one of your hands to the top hip and peel it open, at the same time with your other hand guide their back leg to stay in line with the hip. Stay for a few breaths. To come out, slowly move away so they bring the weight fully back into their standing leg.
If you have any questions or suggestions for additional adjustments not included here please post below!