30. The Seal

 

Once you have mastered the skills needed to successfully perform rolling like a ball, then it’s time to add some movement and hip external rotation. This one takes a little practice and timing to clap your feet without affecting your roll. I recommend barking like a seal while clapping, but your decision.

 

Click here for the Seal VIDEO

 

Classical Start: seated on floor with legs straight in front. Grab instep instead of ankle

Recommended Start: sit on the floor, knees bent, feet flat.

 

1. Reach one arm over thigh and under ankle to grab outside of the ankle. Repeat for the other side. Float both feet an inch or so off the floor to balance just behind the sitz bones and press feet together.

 

2. Exhale and tip pubic bone towards your nose to roll back, inhale to clap feet together twice. Head may touch the ground, but no weight is transferred to head. 

 

3. Exhale to roll back up. Repeat six times.

 

See tips from rolling like a ball to attain and maintain a long C-shape of the spine required for smooth rolling. The clap motion comes from the hips, not the ankles or knees.

 

Variations: add two claps in the seated position as well

 

Modifications: grab ankles without threading arms underneath, leave out the claps until you have mastered the roll with legs in seal position.