utthita = extended
trikona = three angle or triangle
Step by Step
Stand in Tadasana. With an exhalation, step or lightly jump your feet 3 1/2 to 4 feet apart. Raise your arms parallel to the floor and reach them actively out to the sides, shoulder blades wide, palms down.
Turn your left foot in slightly to the right and your right foot out to the right 90 degrees. Align the right heel with the left heel. Firm your thighs and turn your right thigh outward, so that the center of the right knee cap is in line with the center of the right ankle.
Exhale and extend your torso to the right directly over the plane of the right leg, bending from the hip joint, not the waist. Anchor this movement by strengthening the left leg and pressing the outer heel firmly to the floor. Rotate the torso to the left, keeping the two sides equally long. Let the left hip come slightly forward and lengthen the tailbone toward the back heel.
Rest your right hand on your shin, ankle, or the floor outside your right foot, whatever is possible without distorting the sides of the torso. Stretch your left arm toward the ceiling, in line with the tops of your shoulders. Keep your head in a neutral position or turn it to the left, eyes gazing softly at the left thumb.
Stay in this pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Inhale to come up, strongly pressing the back heel into the floor and reaching the top arm toward the ceiling. Reverse the feet and repeat for the same length of time to the left.
Parivrtta Trikonasana - Revolved Triangle
Parivrtta Trikonasana (or Revolved Triangle) is one of the more challenging poses, for beginners and more experienced students alike. This is perhaps because the pose works on many levels - as well as a strong standing pose, it is also a twist and a balance. But the rewards are worth it, and include strengthening and stretching the legs and back, improving balance and opening the chest.
This pose can also be helpful for those suffering with back problems and asthma.
•Begin standing in Tadasana, Mountain Pose. Step the legs a leg-length apart, and turn the right foot out about 90 degrees. Ensure the toes of the left foot are turned towards the right foot.
•Square the hips to the front and root the feet firmly into the mat, without scrunching the toes. If possible, the front and back feet are in line. If this comprises your balance, take the right foot to the side a few inches, keeping the hips square.
•Inhale and take the arms wide to the side, in a T shape. Relax the shoulders.
•Exhale, and move the chest and naval towards the right leg, twisting through the upper body. Place the fingers on the floor outside the right foot, or, to lighten, place the hand on the calf or on a block.
•On an inhale, lift the right hand towards the sky. Beginners should keep the right hand placed on the lower back.
•If your neck is ok, turn your head and look at the right hand. If this causes strain in the neck, keep looking forwards, keeping the spine and neck in one long line.
•Keep breathing, even through your breath is naturally constricted in this twist. Keep the sacrum flat and keep rooting the back foot towards the Earth.
•Breath for between five and 10 breaths, focusing on the exhale. Come out of Parivrtta Trikonasana on an inhale, untwisting the same way you came into the pose. Repeat on the other side.
To lighten this pose, you can bend the front knee, keep the upward hand on the lower back, and/or keep the gaze forward rather than up. Remember to use a block on which to rest the downward hand, or place the hand lightly on the leg.
Translation: Extended Side Angle Pose
From Tadasana step the legs apart. Turn one leg out and bend the knee over the ankle. From Uttanasana step one leg back and externally rotate it until the heel touches the mat. From the Downward Dog Pose step one leg forward between the hands. Externally rotate the back leg until the heel touches the mat.
Turn the foot of the back leg 90 degrees or slightly inward. Place one hand on the mat beside the bent knee and the other hand diagonally out. Stretch the side of the body. In easier versions of this pose the elbow can be placed on the bent leg or on a block.
There are many theories of how this pose should be modified. The back foot does not come to the mat easily if the angle across the body is one clean line from the back legs to the extended arm and fingers, but it does look and feel good.
Both feet have a tendency to Evert (Pronate). This means that all the weight falls onto the inside of the feet. This happens especially in the back leg. Try to get the pinky toes to the mat. To do this you must engage the Tibialis posterior and Tibialis anterior.
The extended side angle stretches the side of the body. However it is a pose that involves all the muscles in the body.
The Groin and shoulders are stretched. The muscles around the hip of the leading leg are stretched and toned. The gluteal muscles are toned and the muscles around the lateral lower abdomen are stretched. Toward the lower back the quadratus lumborum a big muscle that runs along the top of the pelvis and attaches to the bones in the spine is significantly stretched.
The shoulders muscles such as the rotator cuff and closer to the spine the rhomboideus major and minor get a good stretch. Muscles in the shoulders and neck are toned such as the upper trapezius muscles and the levator scapulae. Arm muscles are also toned. The latissimus dorsi is stretched. This is a big muscle that attaches to many bones in the spine (from the sacrum to the lower shoulders) and gathers beside the ribs to attach to the humerus.
Mandukasana - Frog Pose
How to perform Mandukasana
Sit in Vajrasana and make fists with both hands, the thumbs inside. Place your fists on your belly next to the belly button.
Bend forward with exhalation. Hold your breath in the yoga posture for a few seconds and come up with inhalation.
Benefits of Mandukasana
This yoga pose is beneficial for people suffering from diabetes as well as for the pancreas and the heart.
The frog pose helps reduce fat from thighs, belly and hips.
Regulate your breathing with going in and out of the posture. This will strengthen the effect of reducing extra belly weight.
Performing the frog pose together with the right breathing and with an empty stomach stimulates the acupressure points of pancreas and heart.
When to Avoid Mandukasana
People suffering from abdominal injuries and any kind back pain should not perform the frog yoga pose.
Pose recommended for doing after Mandukasana
In the frog pose you bend forward and contract all your inner muscles. In the next step it is recommended to perform Uttan Mandukasana, the Uplifting or Stretched Frog Pose to stretch all these muscles.
Camel Pose - Ustrasana
Type of pose: Backbend
Benefits: Stretches the front of the body including the chest, abdomen, and quadriceps. Improves spinal flexibility.
1. Come up onto your knees. Take padding under your knees if they are sensitive.
2. Draw your hands up the side of your body as you start to open your chest.
3. Reach your hands back one at a time to grasp your heels.
4. Bring your hips forward so that they are over your knees.
5. Let your head come back, opening your throat.
Beginners: Curl your toes under and come to the balls of your feet if you cannot reach your heels when the feet are flat, or use blocks on either side of your feet.
Advanced: Try taking hold of opposite ankles.
Veerasana (warrior pose)
Veera means brave. The way a brave man takes position while attacking his enemy, the similar position is formed in this asana, hence it is called as Veerasana.
1. Take the left foot forward and place the left foot on the floor at th e maximum distance from the initial position.
2. Bring both the hands together, join the palms and place them on the knees of the left leg. Bend the left leg in the knee in such a way that the thigh and the calf come in 90 degrees. Keep the right leg straight.
3. Raise the joined hands up and take them back above the head and then without bending the hands in the elbows, bend the head backward and keep the sight backward down.
The front leg should be bent in 90 degrees angle and the back leg should be straight. Keep the toes frontward. The back leg, the back, the neck and both the hands form a very good arch in this position and this forming of arch is desirable, too. The body should be weighed backward and keeping the arms near the ears, the neck should also be bent downwards.
1. Start bringing the body forward and place the hands on the knee. Keep sight to the front.
2. Straighten the knee and restore the hands to their original place.
3. Restore the left leg to its place and take up standing position.
It should be maintained for at least one minute, to have the desired strain and benefits; with practice, duration can be increased to three minutes.
In this asana the joints of the legs, the waist, the spinal column and the neck get curved in opposite direction. As a result of this, the blood circulation to these joints is regulated. The spinal column becomes elastic and its functioning improves. There is pressure on the digestive organs and the belly gets stretched, which promotes their functioning..
The process of the backward bending should be slow and controlled, else it becomes difficult to maintain the balance. The loss of balance may prove injurious to certain parts of the body. Slow and controlled movements help in having halt at the needed point and avoiding the unwanted strain.
Note: This asana is to be repeated for the right leg also.
PAVANAMUKTASANA (Both The Legs)
The knees and thighs are pressed against the chest and belly in this asana. The gas trapped in the large intestine gets released in this Asana. Therefore, it is called 'Pavanamuktasana'.
Pre position Supine Position.
Use Generally practiced to get rid of abdominal & gastric problems and improve digestion etc.
Exhale and inhailing, start raising both the legs and come to Dwipada Uttanpadasana Position.
Bend both the legs in the knees and keep the folds on the belly. Keep the knees and toes together.
Now keep the belly pressed with the thighs and clasp the folded legs with both the hands.
Now bending the neck, raise the head and fix the chin between the knees.
It is necessary to keep the knees and thighs pressed against the chest and belly in this asana. At the same time the calves should also be pressed against the thighs so that when the hands clasp the legs, the desired pressure can be had on the belly. The proper pressure on the concerned organs of the body gives the desired benefits.
Straighten the neck and bring the head on the floor.
Unfold the hands and bring them to their earlier position.
Inhailing, straighten both the legs and come to Dwipad Uttanpadasana Position.
Exhailing, slowly bring both the legs down and place them on the floor and take Supine Position.
Generally it should be maintained for one minute. That way this asana can be retained longer but that is not necessary.
Due to the nice and systematic pressure on the belly, the trapped gases in large intestine are released. This improves the digestion system and helps have good motion.
People who have undergone an operation on belly or suffering from hernia and piles, etc. should perform this asana after consulting some Yoga Expert. Similarly, the pregenant women should also not practice it.
Do’s & Don’ts Do’s
- Keep the legs folded in knees and pressed on the abdomen using the folded arms.
- Try to touch the chin to the knees.
- Try to keep the legs together.
- Point the toes.
Simple variation – keep the head on the ground instead of trying to touch the chin to the knees.
- Do not strain your neck.