Keeping your arms up in the same position from the first part, continue to keep your triceps engaged and your elbows locked with your fingers together pointing straight towards the front mirror. Your feet are still shoulder-width apart perpendicular to the front mirror.
In the second part pretend you are a "Bikram Ballerina" as if there is a string going down the center of your body and someone is pulling the string straight from the top of your head. Stare into the mirror with laser beam focus and don't move your eyes or you could lose your balance.
Come up as high as possible onto your toes. Watch the alignment of your ankles, they should be straight and not shooting out or in from the alignment of your legs. Concentrate mostly on the first and second toes of each foot pressing into the floor. Below is a photo of Bikram Choudhury in the second part of Awkward Pose. Look how high he comes up on his toes!
Sit your hips all the way into the chair, but don't go below the chair. Rotate your pelvis under you to get rid of the "duck butt" and to keep your back perfectly straight.
Shaking, burning and discomfort is a good thing. It means you are burning calories and building muscles. From famous Bikram yogi Emmy Cleaves: “Whenever there is shaking, there is always a threatened nerve. It’s NEVER an impulse saying, “If you keep going there could be trouble.” Shaking is not bad, it is your body creating new neural passageways and learning to strengthen and hold.”
If your upper body is leaning forward, this means you must come up higher on the toes. Don’t be scared to come as high as possible on the toes. Remember that Bikram often says this posture should one day be done just on the big toe.
Come up from the second part slowly to build more strength in the legs. Before you know it, your legs will be toned and shaped like nobody's business!
*Check back next week for the third part of Awkward Pose.