Use a block to open up with Trikonasana (Triangle Pose)!

Move-It Monday~Yoga Pose: Triangle Pose (Trikonasana)

Difficulty level: Easy

Benefits

  • Opens the calves, hamstrings, hips, spine, side body, chest, and shoulders
  • Strengthens the ankles, knees, thighs, and back
  • Stimulates abdominal organs, improving digestion

Place one block near the top right side of your mat.  Begin in Down Dog.  Inhale to lengthen your right leg up and behind you, then exhale and draw the right foot in between your hands, coming into a low lunge with your left knee off the ground.  Stack your right knee on top of your right ankle, then pivot your left foot flat on the mat parallel to the short edge of the mat.  Maintaining the lunge, lift your torso vertical, and place your hands on your hips.

With your left hand on your hip, take your gaze and right hand down to your block.  Position the block to the outside of your right ankle and press firmly into the block with your right hand.  Inhale, press the ball of your big toe into the mat as you draw your right thigh up towards your left hip, straightening your right leg (do not lock your right knee!).  Imagine drawing energy up your right leg to your left hip, then pressing that energy back down your left leg, spinning the left thigh outward and rooting your left foot (especially from the big toe over to the pinky toe) into the ground.

If you wish, as you press firmly into the block, inhale and extend your left arm towards the sky.  Firm the left shoulder blade on your back and slightly draw your right shoulder forward to stack the shoulders.  Maintain a neutral position from the spine through the head by keeping a straight line from the spine through the crown of the head.  If you do not have any neck issues, you may choose to turn your head and gaze up to the left (still maintaining a neutral spine/head position).

Hold this for several breaths, then draw your left arm to the floor as you pivot your left leg back to a lunge position.  Inhale; behind your exhale, press your right leg back to Down Dog.  Rest for several breaths in Down Dog, then repeat on the opposite side.

Variations:

If you feel unstable in this position, place the outer edge of your back foot against the baseboard of a wall.  Pressing into the wall with the edge of the foot, as well as down with the sole of the foot, can help you to deepen the stretch while protecting your balance.

Variations:

Remember that the block has three heights.  Begin this pose with the highest position of the block, lowering the block as your practice progresses.  As you move the block lower, maintain the length through the side body, bending at the hip (not the waist).

Don’t have a block or want a deeper stretch?  Lobster claw your shin, or ankle, or place your fingertips or palm on the floor instead of a block.

Looking for a yoga sequence you can incorporate into your daily routine?  Check out Refresh, Renew, Reset~A 7-Day Jumpstart For Mind and Body.  I created this nutrition protocol with daily yoga and meditation to assist you in jumping into (or back into) your healthy lifestyle!