Viparita Karani: Legs Up The Wall Pose
Viparita karani (vip-par-ee-tah car-AHN-ee) is a gentle restorative pose. This slightly inverted pose can ease busy mind chatter and may relieve uncomfortable symptoms like tension and menstrual cramps. You may enjoy practicing this pose with a block, folded blanket, or pillow under your hips to lift your hips above the plane of your heart.
- Viparita: reversed/inverted
- Karani: doing/action
- Relieves tired feet and legs.
- Gently stretches the hamstrings and legs.
- Can relieve discomfort in the lower back.
- Thought to calm the mind.
- Thought to ease symptoms of anxiety and stress.
- Shoulder stand on the wall
- Dragonfly on the wall
- Figure four on the wall
- Place a pillow, bolster, or folded blanket under your hips to release the hamstrings and low back.
- Gently lower your feet out to the sides so your legs make a wide “V” shape for dragonfly on the wall.
- Place a rolled up blanket under your neck for additional support.
- Loop a strap around your thighs to allow the legs to relax more deeply.
- Begin seated beside an open wall, with your hip and shoulder against the wall.
- Gently lower your torso down to the ground as your legs lift up against the wall.
- Option to wiggle closer to or further away from the wall to your comfort level.
- Option to place a block, pillow, or folded blanket under your hips to release any discomfort in the low back or hamstrings.
- Allow your head to rest on the ground or a pillow and place your arms wherever they are most comfortable.
- Stay anywhere from one to 15 minutes.
- To release, push the bottoms of your feet into the wall and lift your hips slightly. If using a support, move the support out of the way. Gently roll to one side and stay for a few breaths before returning to your seat.
Utthita Trikonasana: Triangle Pose
A classic standing posture in many yoga lineages utthita trikonasana (oo-TEE-tah trik-cone-AHS-uh-nah), strengthens and stretches the entire body. Approaching the pose with knowledge of intelligent modifications will help you enjoy the posture and all it has to offer.
Philosophy + Origin
In hatha yoga, where the intent is to unite opposing forces – sun with moon, masculine with feminine, light with dark – this pose offers an opportunity to embody this philosophy when you focus on finding stability while you expand. When you look at the physical shape of the posture, you also see the triangles being formed. And, when you look a little closer, you find several triangles hidden in the shape of the body – the two legs with the floor, floating under the side body, and between the front foot and the front hand.