If you like lying around your house on pillows of various sizes, then you will absolutely love a bolster. Bolsters are wonderful additions to your practice not only because they’re big and soft, but more importantly because they can be used to enhance nearly any pose. Bolsters come in all different sizes and variations of firmness, so when you’re at the studio, try as many of them as you can until you find your favorite!
The most common way to use a bolster is to lie on top of it. Place it under your spine lengthwise, widthwise, higher up your back near the shoulderblades, lower underneath your sacrum, under your knees, any way that feels sensational. Then let gravity relax your body and voila! Using it this way can open the chest, relax the lower back, create space in the hip flexors, or give your neck a break.
Another way to use it is for extra height in any seated forward folds. Prop it against your forehead to begin your forward bend and keep moving it farther away from you as your hamstrings open. Lie your torso on top of it in child’s pose for extra juiciness and hip opening. Use it in pigeon for a different kind of stretch. One of my favorite ways to use it is in deer pose: sitting on the outside of the hip, fold knees away from the bolster in two triangles and lay your torso, shoulders squared, on the bolster for an intense twist. After a few minutes, switch sides.
The key to using any prop is to find how it works for you. No body is the same, so props will work differently for different bodies. Don’t be afraid to play and find your favorite way to use your prop!
By Fae Leslie Hoffman; All Rights Reserved @2019