Seated Foot-Behind-The-Head Pose - Eka Pada Sirsasana
Seated Foot-Behind-the-Head Pose or Eka Pada Sirsasana in Sanskrit (eka, meaning “one,” pada, meaning “foot,” sirsa, meaning “head,” and asana, meaning “pose.”), is one of those quintessential advanced yoga poses that everyone thinks of when they think of yoga! This pose can certainly seem intimidating – and with good reason, as it requires some pretty extreme flexibility in the hips and legs. However, as you progress in your practice, this is a good “peak pose” to aspire to and work towards!
Seated Foot-Behind-the-Head Pose offers an extreme stretch for the hamstrings, hips, glutes, and psoas muscles, and also strengthens the core, back, shoulders, and neck.
- Difficulty: Advanced
- By Type: Balancing Yoga Poses, Flexibility Yoga Poses, Hip Opening Yoga Poses, Strengthening Yoga Poses
- Body Position: Seated Yoga Poses
- By Benefit: Yoga Poses For Digestion
Benefits and Contraindications
Increases blood flow and circulation, especially to the back of the body
Strengthens the back, neck and shoulders
Relieves tightness in the groin and hamstrings
Stimulates the abdominal organs, relieving digestive problems
Hip, knee, neck or back injuries
Modifications and Props for Beginners
- Use a folded blanket: Place a folded blanket under your hips to elevate them and provide support. This can make it easier to fold forward and bring your head towards your knee.
- Bend your knee: If you’re having trouble straightening your leg, you can bend the knee of the extended leg to make the pose more accessible. You can also use a strap around your foot to help you straighten your leg.
- Use a wall: If balance is a challenge, you can use a wall for support. Stand facing the wall and place your extended leg against the wall. This will help you maintain your balance and focus on the stretch in your hamstring.
- The first thing to observe by you is that the main focus should be on the breath and make it slow and steady .
- It might be a bit challenging for you to do the pose as it requires lots of flexibility, but once you have practiced and are able to do one-leg-behind-head-pose, then the focus should shift to breathing. You should try hard to do this pose and always try to relax in Eka Pada Sirsasana.
- Remember to listen to your body and stop if you feel any pain or discomfort.
Frequently Asked Questions
Eka Pada Sirsasana is an advanced pose that requires a high level of strength, flexibility, and balance, and may not be suitable for beginners. It’s important to work up to the pose gradually with the guidance of an experienced yoga teacher.
Eka Pada Sirsasana is an advanced pose that should be approached with caution. If you have any injuries or medical conditions, it’s important to consult with a healthcare professional before attempting the pose. You should also avoid the pose if you have high blood pressure or any neck or shoulder issues.
You can start by holding Eka Pada Sirsasana for a few breaths and gradually work up to holding the pose for 30 seconds to one minute. Remember to listen to your body and take breaks as needed.
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