Parivrtta Trikonasana: Revolved Triangle Pose

RevolvedTriangle_NicholeGolden

Parivrtta trikonasana (par-ee-VRIT-tah trik-cone-AHS-anna) is a great counterpose to its expansive sibling, utthita trikonasana (extended triangle). Stretching your spine and releasing tension in your chest and shoulders is a great antidote to a long work day.

Philosophy + Origin

As the more feminine version of utthita trikonasana, revolved triangle reminds us that there are always two sides to every coin — the dark to the light, the cold to the hot, the feminine to the masculine, the stillness after the movement. Reflecting on the differences and similarities between the two versions of triangle pose can help you find balance between two apparent opposites. Although feminine and masculine might seem like night and day, there’s a place in the middle where the two always meet.

ADJUSTMENTS/MODIFICATIONS:

  • If shoulders are tight or tender, keep the raised hand on your hip rather than extending it straight toward the sky.
  • Use a block under your bottom hand to bring the ground closer to you.
  • Press the forearm of the bottom arm against the shin of the front leg to deepen the twist.
  • Keep your gaze down or to the side to release the neck.

STEP-BY-STEP:

  1. Begin in a lunge with your right foot forward. Straighten your front leg and hop your back foot in to place your heel on the ground (pyramid pose).
  2. Place your left hand on the floor or a block, to the inside of your right foot. Place your right hand to your right hip and encourage your right hip behind you.
  3. Extend the crown of your head forward, then turn your torso toward your right leg.
  4. Lift your right arm toward the ceiling.
  5. Keep rooting down through your left heel.
  6. Option to turn your gaze to the ceiling.
  7. Hold for 5-10 breaths, then release back to lunge. Repeat on the other side.

PREPARATORY POSES:

SEQUENTIAL POSES:

COUNTER POSES:

SANSKRIT:

  • Parivrtta = revolved
  • Trikona = triangle
  • Asana = pose

PHYSICAL BENEFITS:

  • Expands chest and shoulders.
  • Stretches the spine and increases range of motion.
  • Strengthens and tones the thighs.

ENERGETIC BENEFITS:

  • Soothes and stills the mind.


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Virabhadrasana II: Warrior II Pose

ADJUSTMENTS    |     BENEFITS   |     SEQUENCING    |     SANSKRIT    |     STEPS

Warrior II, or virabhadrasana (veer-ah-bah-DRAHS-anna) II, is a strengthening pose that improves physical and mental endurance. Its ability to stretch your upper legs and ankles while also expanding your chest and shoulders makes it an essential foundational pose for most asana-based (pose-based) yoga practices.

Philosophy + Origin

While warrior II is a strong pose, it also requires balance and steadiness. Although many origin stories for virabhadrasana II describe the shape of the pose as the stance Virabhadra took as he drew his sword to remove the head of his enemy, any student who has practiced the pose will learn that, while fierce, there’s also a gentleness within the physical lines. The yogic philosophy of sthira sukha, or balancing effort with ease, can be applied when practicing warrior II. How can you harness your warrior spirit while not losing sight of your gentle spirit and your commitment to ahimsa, non-violence?

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