2. Dancer Pose
Loop a strap around one foot, hold the other end of the strap with both hands over the shoulder and start moving into the dancer pose. Walk your hands down the strap as much as you need to shorten the distance between hands and foot. Keep lifting the chest and kicking the foot into the strap.
3. Cow Face Arms
Tight shoulders often prevent people from being able to clasp hands behind the back. A yoga strap helps to modify the pose and still receive all benefits of the stretch. Just hold onto the strap with both hands and shorten the grip as your progress in this pose.
4. Shoulder Stretch
This is one of my favourite ways to use a yoga strap because you can do it anytime, not just during your yoga practice. I like to keep a strap on my work desk and stretch shoulders during the breaks. Begin by sitting or standing with a neutral spine and hold a strap above your head with both hands wider than your shoulders. Bring the arms back and down, then up again, slowing down on the difficult spot. You can adjust the strap as much as you need to feel the stretch in the shoulders and chest.
7. Reclined Hand To Big Toe Pose
Just as in standing version of this pose, you can loop a strap around your foot and gently pull the leg closer to you to deepen the stretch.
8. Boat Pose
This boat pose variation with a strap is great if you struggle with keeping spine long in this pose due to the lack of core strength. Using a strap requires a little less core strength so that you can focus on straightening the back, stretching the hamstrings, and balancing on the sit bones. Bend your legs and place the strap around your feet, holding on to the ends of the strap with both hands. Slowly lift your legs, keeping the spine long. You can keep the legs bent or straighten them.
10. Reclined Pigeon Pose/ Figure 4 Stretch
Reclined pigeon pose is a great alternative to a classic pigeon pose, especially for people who have knee issues in classic pigeon pose. You can do this pose without a strap, but if holding hands behind your thigh/shin doesn’t feel comfortable, hold onto the strap instead and pull your leg closer. Another option is to place a strap around the foot, straighten the leg and gently pull the strap to intensify the stretch.
11. Bound Poses
If you don’t have enough flexibility yet to clasp your hands in bound yoga poses, try using a strap. As you advance, shorten the grip until you are able to clasp your hands without collapsing chest and shoulders.
These were some of my favourite ways to use a yoga strap, but there are so many more ways to use it. So experiment and find what works best for you :)