POSE OF THE MONTH: SIDE ANGLE POSE

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SANSKRIT NAME

  • Utthita Parsvakonasana

ALIGNMENT & VARIATIONS

  • Begin in Warrior II
  • Rest the right forearm on top of the right thigh, palm facing up – avoid dumping weight into forearm (should just be lightly touching)
  • Extend left arm up towards sky or up and over the head, fingertips reaching forward – long line from fingertips to back foot
  • Draw the left shoulder back, chest open, shoulders open
  • Ground down through all four corners of the right foot for balance and strength, ground outside edge of left foot down
  • Extend through back leg without locking out the knee – external rotation of the back thigh
  • Shoulders down away from the ears
  • Side waists long, ore engaged, strong, protecting lower back
  • Gaze down if neck is stiff, or maybe shift gaze up towards top arm
  • Repeat on opposite side
  • Option: Place a block directly underneath the shoulder, rest the fingers/hand lightly on the block (avoid dumping weight into bottom hand). Press down into front foot for strength. Reach top fingers up towards the sky, gaze following the hand.
  • Option: Bring fingertips to mat on inside edge of foot. Sink hips down lower to reach and open up the groin. Again, avoid dumping weight into bottom fingers or hand. Keep reaching up with top fingertips. Keep drawing shoulders back, rotating.
  • Option: Finding a full bind – bring the right shoulder as far beneath the knee as possible, thread right arm through and wrap the right thigh. Left arm reaches back, wrapping around the waist. Fingertips meet behind the back, interlace the fingers. Keep drawing top shoulder back, chest open, and sinking down into lunge.

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Option: Place a block underneath the shoulder, fingertips just resting lightly.

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Option to bring the fingers lightly to the mat. Keep sinking down into lunge.

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Option to come into a full bind, interlacing fingers behind the back. Keep deep lunge and opening top shoulder.

 

BENEFITS

  • Strengthens the thighs, calves, ankles
  • Strengthens the core muscles and shoulders
  • Opens the shoulders, chest, waist, front body, hips, groin and inside thighs

WATCH: IN SEQUENCE

 

 

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