Supta Padangusthasana, Stage 3
In the previous two columns, we presented stages one and two of Supta Padangusthasana (Reclined Big Toe Pose). In today's third stage, the muscles of the hips and buttocks are given an intense stretch.
The three stages of this pose are wonderful for those suffering from lower backaches and should be practiced until the legs become elastic and mobile.
1. Lie on the floor with the upper back on a support (folded blankets or a large pillow). Extend your legs out straight with your feet together.
2. Extend your buttock bones to your heels to stretch the back of the legs and press your legs into the floor.
3. Keep the back of your left leg straight and pressed into the floor as you bend your right leg and rotate the right thigh out. Hold your right foot with your left hand.
COURTESY MANOA YOGA CENTER
Shelley Choy, co-director of Manoa Yoga Center, demonstrates Supta Padangusthasana, Stage 3.
4. Now scoop the right arm and then the left under your right shin. Maintain the outward rotation of your right thigh as you bring the right shin across your chest. Observe that your right knee is in line with your right shoulder and your shin is parallel to your chest. Keep your upper torso and shoulders even; do not let your trunk twist or rotate.
5. Notice that your sacrum and buttocks tend to lift off the floor and become distorted and your left leg bends. Breathe evenly through your nose as you work patiently to keep your left leg straight and buttocks on the floor. Try to maintain body symmetry.
6. Hold the pose for up to a minute and then repeat to the other side.
and Shelley Choy
are certified Iyengar Yoga teachers and co-direct the Manoa Yoga Center at Manoa Marketplace. Visit www.manoayoga.com
or call 382-3910. Manoa Yoga Center, the authors and the Star-Bulletin take no responsibility for any injury arising from the practice of these yoga postures. Readers should seek a doctor's approval before commencing this yoga practice.