Agnistambhasana: Firelog Pose

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Agnistambhasana (AG-nee-stahm-BAHS-ah-nah) is sometimes referred to as double pigeon pose because the legs take a similar shape as they do in pigeon pose. Firelog pose creates a deep stretch in the outer hips and space in the low back.

Philosophy + Origin

Fire (agni) is a transformative element. Agnistambhasana can be very uncomfortable as many people carry deep tension in their hips. See if you can feel the fire building in your hips and with your breath as you hold this pose.

ADJUSTMENTS/MODIFICATIONS:

  • Sit on a folded blanket or block to create more space for your hips.
  • Place your top leg in front of your bottom leg (rather than on top of it) to ease pressure on the knees.
  • Use a block under your top ankle to release pressure on your bottom leg.
  • Use a block under your top knee to help the hip relax and to relieve discomfort in the knee.

STEP-BY-STEP:

  1. Sit cross-legged with your right shin in front of your left.
  2. Shift your shins forward so they are about parallel with your mat.
  3. Flex your feet and scootch the soles of your feet closer to the edges of your mat, so your right ankle is about under your left knee, and your left ankle is about under your right knee.
  4. Use your hands to help lift your right shin on top of your left shin, right ankle on top of your left knee.
  5. Sit up tall or start to hinge forward at your hips. If folding forward, walk your hands out on the ground in front of you.
  6. Hold for up to a minute, then return to a neutral seat. Repeat on the other side.

PREPARATORY POSES:

SEQUENTIAL POSES:

  • Lotus pose | Padmasana
  • Long horn pose | Dirghasrngasana
  • Cow face pose | Gomukhasana

COUNTER POSES:

SANSKRIT:

  • Agni = fire
  • Stambha = logs
  • Asana = pose

BENEFITS:

  • Stretches the outer hips.
  • Thought to release tension in mind and body.
  • Thought to build digestive fire.


Uttana Shishosana: Extended Puppy Pose

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ADJUSTMENTS    |     BENEFITS   |     SEQUENCING    |     SANSKRIT    |     STEPS

An intelligent pose to help lengthen the spine and relieve mental stress, uttana shishosana (OO-ta-NAH she-SHO-sahna), is a hybrid pose — a cross between balasana (child’s pose) and adho mukha svanasana (downward facing dog). Uttana shishosana is a great way to energize the physical and subtle bodies for when you’re feeling fatigued, or when you’ve been stuck behind a desk or in a chair all day. Energetically, the posture has the benefits of increasing both self-confidence and self-love.

Philosophy + Origin

Uttana shishosana is a great reminder of why we practice yoga: to feel better and to find tools to help us live our best lives. Named because of the way dogs and puppies stretch, this posture, while far from fancy, is effective in its simplicity. As humans, it’s easy to want to complicate life, always looking to the past or future in order to find meaning.

Dogs, on the other hand, are great at being present. Loyal and playful, our canine companions have a lot to teach us about relaxing and taking care of ourselves and those we love. As you practice extended puppy pose, allow yourself to settle into your senses. Allow yourself to linger (and lengthen) in the feel-good sensations.

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