Dua Lipa has many talents. In addition to being a singer, songwriter, and model, she also boasts impressive yoga skills. The 26-year-old pop star posted a recap of a recent weekend on Instagram, including a series of selfies, photos of her friends, snaps of delicious-looking meals, and a short video clip of herself doing a headstand.
In the video (found in slide four of the photo dump), the “Levitating” singer‘s back is facing the camera. She’s positioned with her head and forearms on the floor, her hips in the air, and her feet on the ground. She slowly walks her feet toward her head before lifting one foot into the air, followed by the other. Lipa successfully holds a headstand position for a few seconds, using her core muscles for strength and balance, before bringing her legs back down to the ground.
Watch Dua Lipa nailing a headstand
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This isn’t the first time Lipa showcased her strength and yoga skills for the ‘gram. In another video posted in March, the “Don’t Start Now” singer demonstrated a crow pose, which involves balancing on your hands with your shins resting on your upper arms and your feet lifted in the air. After getting into the pose, Lipa manages to get her head on the ground from that position and effortlessly (or so it appears) picks up both feet to flow through a headstand pose.
Doing a headstand pose doesn’t just make for a cool Instagram post; It also offers many mental and physical perks. “There are so many benefits to doing yoga inversions, like headstands,” says Jeannine Morris Lombardi, a New Jersey-based yoga teacher. “When your head is below your heart, like in a headstand, gravity naturally brings more blood and oxygen to your brain, which, if you hold it long enough — seven minutes for maximum benefits — and practice it daily, can improve your mental function.” In addition to improving mental function, it may help increase energy and alertness, she says. Studies have also suggested a relationship between certain yoga poses and increased energy and self-esteem.
If you’re interested in learning how to do a headstand, start by practising against a wall for extra support, recommends Morris Lombardi. Start by bringing a mat to the wall and getting on all fours. Clasp your hands together with your fingers interlocked and place the crown of your head onto the floor in between your hands, resting your forearms on the ground, says Morris Lombardi. Make sure to keep your elbows shoulder-width apart.
With forearms pressing onto the ground, walk your feet toward your hands, keeping your shoulders directly over your elbows. “[Then], bend one knee at a time to bring your legs into your chest. Continue pressing down into the ground with your forearms as you extend your legs up toward the ceiling.” When your legs are up, you’ll need to engage your core to remain stabilised. “Doing a headstand takes a lot of core strength,” she points out.
Although they’re fun to try, headstands aren’t right for everyone. “If you have a neck or spine injury, glaucoma, or are pregnant, skip it,” says Morris Lombardi. You’ll also want to have a solid understanding of the foundations of yoga before jumping into a more advanced move, such as a headstand, to avoid injury.
There’s no doubt doing a headstand requires a ton of skill and practice. If you’re game to give a shot and are already a regular at yoga, remember to be patient and breathe. In time, you’re sure to reap the benefits, and you may even get some impressive Instagram content, just like Lipa.
This story first appeared on www.shape.com
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