Something I'm looking to try in my yoga practice this year is to challenge myself to learn new, more difficult asanas. So I've decided to select two challenge poses for each quarter of the year. That will give me three months to work specifically on those two poses. If I successfully learn then, GREAT. I'll post pictures. And if I don't, that's okay too. The whole point is to get me out of my comfort zone so I can grow and learn in my practice. Hopefully at the end of the year I will have eight new poses to add to my daily practice repertoire.
The first challenge pose for the January/February/March quarter is Bakasana (aka, "Crane Pose"). This is something I've sort of been working on since November, but not in earnest. I can get into the pose, I just can't keep my balance for very long. I need to develop my upper body strength before I'll be able to master it.
The second challenge pose for the January/February/March quarter is Urdhva Prasarita Eka Padasana (aka, "Needle Pose" or "Standing Split"). This is something I learned long long ago in dance and ballet as "ponche." I am already fairly decent as this asana, except that I have to keep both hands on the floor and I could have better extension through the upper leg. My primary goal is going to be to improve my balance in needle pose such that I can wrap both hands around the ankle of my supporting leg. If I achieve this, then I'm going to work on my flexibility and extension.
I will let you know how I do in this challenge at the end of March.