Eka Pada Rajakapotasana

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Many people’s favourite pose, pigeon is a most rewarding when held for several minutes. A deep hip opener it’s a great preparation for backbends and a prerequisite for getting your foot behind the head in poses such as supta kurmasana.

Technique:

1. From Adho Mukha Svanasana, bend the right knee, slide right toes along left side of mat, bringing knee in behind. Press the top of foot into the mat.

2. Stretch left leg out behind. Press the top of foot into the mat.

3. Option of using a prop under your right buttock

4. Check your left leg is straight and aligned with the edge of the mat.

5. Prioritise squaring off the hips. Inhale, look forward, lifting the chest.

6. Exhale and walk the hands forward, keeping hips aligned to the floor.

7. Forehead to the floor, rest forehead on hands or stay on forearms.

8. Take 10 – 15 slow breaths

To release:

Inhale and look forward. Exhale, lift torso up as you walk hands back, then tuck left toes under and step back into Adho Mukha Svanasana then change sides.

Contraindications and Cautions:

  • Acute sacroiliac injury
  • Ankle or knee injury – support with props
  • Caution with excessively tight hips or thighs – support with props
  • Lower back discomfort – bring torso forward onto forearms
  • Late pregnancy – don’t go very far forward

Benefits:

  • Stretches the hips, groin and psoas
  • Helps prevent sciatica
  • Releases deep held emotions such as fear, anxiety and sadness

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