Want to get better at backbends in yoga? Try a Yoga Wheel!

backbends yoga wheelRemember in January of 2015 when I set a goal to hold a scorpion pose by the end of the year?

Yeah… that didn’t happen. Although I improved my headstand and could get into scorpion position propped up against a wall, I definitely didn’t achieve the forearm-balancing, back-bending badassery I had hoped to by the end of the year.

After the marathon on October 9, my post-race plan is to focus on strength and flexibility again until I inevitably start training for my next race (and who knows when that will be). So I was stoked when YogDev, a Vancouver-based yoga prop company, asked if I would like to try their Yoga Wheel and write a review for my blog. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect, as I’ve been incorporating more yoga and stretching into my training plan and have been using a big foam roller for releasing lower back tension at the end of the day.

As you can see, the Yoga Wheel is the epitome of lower back tension relief!

The YogDev Yoga Wheel is used to help you get into Dharma yoga wheel poses, as a prop for balancing asanas, and for general yoga stretching and back tension relief. The wheel itself is made of a high-quality hard plastic that can support up to 300 lbs, and is suitable for yogis who are between 5’ and 6’5” in height. The Yoga Wheel also has rubbery TPE padding on the outside for cushioning that’s scent free and antibacterial, so it stays grippy and fresh no matter how sweaty you get. It’s also lightweight, so it’s perfect for travel and carrying to class with you attached to your yoga mat bag.

The YogDev Yoga Wheel

The YogDev Yoga Wheel

Here are a few poses I’ve been working on with my Yoga Wheel. The simple spinal release and salamba sarvangasana (shoulder stand) are my favourites for releasing back tension at the end of the day, and I love practicing wheel pose using the Yoga Wheel as it provides support under your back to give your arms break while you work on getting into a deeper bend. Although the Yoga Wheel is not meant to replace a foam roller for rolling the muscles in your back, I do find it way more effective than a foam roller for holding back stretches.

Spinal release on a yoga wheel

Spinal release


Shoulder stand

Shoulder stand


Prepping for a back bend

Prepping for a backbend


yoga back bend

Backbend!

To see all the cool poses and stretches you can do with the YogDev Yoga wheel, check out their handy video tutorial.

The YogDev Yoga Wheel retails for about $60 CAD, similar to the price of a good quality yoga mat. I’d say it’s well worth the investment—even if you’re not trying to work on your backbends—as it can be used as a support prop or just to release spinal tension at the end of the day. If you’re interested in getting a yoga wheel for yourself, YogDev was kind enough to offer my readers a $5 discount off the purchase of a Yoga Wheel! Use code: BWYOGAWHEEL at checkout when you visit www.yogdev.com.

Using the YogDev Yoga Wheel for balance poses

Using the YogDev Yoga Wheel for balance poses

I can’t wait to use it more for backbend training once marathon training is over to work my way back up to holding a scorpion pose once again.

Have you tried a yoga wheel?
What yoga pose is hardest for you to get into?
What’s your favourite form of yoga?

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Linking up with the lovely:

Annmarie at The Fit Foodie Mama, Nicole at Fitful Focus, Michelle at Fruition Fitness and Jen at Pretty Little Grub

Disclaimer: I received a Yoga Wheel from YogDev in return for a review. As always, all opinions are my own. Thank you for your support!