Standing split

Yoga Poses

Standing Split Urdhva Prasarita Eka Padasana

Steps

Begin in mountain pose with feet togetherRaise arms over head, fold forward from hips, placing fingertips in front of feet. Shift weight onto right foot, raise left leg behind into a split, toe pointing up. To exit the pose, lower the leg to ground. Look up halfway. Bring the hands to hips and hinge upwards to start position. Repeat other side

Teacher Queues

Visualization Comments

The focus is on physical awareness to maintain balance and stability whilse standing on one leg. When shifting weight from left to right, picture a bag of sand poured down the right leg and foot – like a plaster cast. Now imagine the left leg to be filled with air like a balloon.

Technical Comments

When in mountain pose, lift and spread the toes, to connect sole of foot with ground. Place hands on hip joints and press gently. Lift the chest and hinge forward, bring fingers tips to press in ground. Keep eye gaze on the ground just in front of the toes. Step the left foot back slightly and raise the leg, stretch the toe upward.

Benefit Comments

  • Strengthens back, hip and leg muscles
  • Improves blood circulation
  • Massages internal organs
  • Improves concentration and focus
  • Improves balance and coordination

Watch Out For:

  • Tight hamstrings and/or groin – micro bend knees, use blocks, wall
  • Hyperextending knees – micro bend knees

Contraindications

  • Heart conditions
  • High blood pressure
  • Vertigo

Modifications

  • Place hands on blocks or chair
  • Practice with back to wall, slide or rest foot on wall
  • Practice in front of wall and walk hands down wall to floor, then raise leg

Variations

  • Bring hands to touch toes of standing leg
  • Bring nose to touch knee of standing leg
  • Hold hands around ankle
  • No hands

Yoga Counter Poses

  • Salute (Hasta Uttanasana)
  • Cobra, upward facing dog, downward facing dog (Vinyasa sequence )
  • Crocodile pose (Makarasana)

Written By: Brenda Hamlet

Brenda Hamlet, is teacher and journalist in Oxford, England. More information about Brenda can be found at www.pret-a-yoga.com

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