Uta’s Insights: Yoga Pose of the Week—5. Triangle Pose

July 7, 2014 By Uta Pippig

Triangle Pose—Trikonasana

Triangle pose. © Tim DeFrisco
Triangle pose. © Tim DeFrisco

Trikonasana is good for stretching the adductors and lateral torso. It also enhances the flexibility of the hips, and because of its rotation of the upper body helps improve balance and concentration.

The Triangle pose can be practiced in conjunction with the Warrior Two pose: you move from Warrior Two into Triangle by straightening the knee of the front leg.

I particularly like this “multi-stretch” because it stretches the hamstring muscles and opens the chest for better breathing.

How to practice the Triangle pose:

  1. Start in Mountain pose. Take a big step back with the right leg; the left foot stays straight ahead and the right foot turns slightly outwards about 15 degrees. The heel of the left foot should line up with the arch of the right foot.
  2. Inhale as you raise your arms out to shoulder level. The ankles should line up under the wrists.
  3. While you extend out through the fingers, soften the shoulders down. Turn your head to gaze at the middle finger of the left hand.
  4. With the next exhalation, extend the upper body to the left and stretch out the left hand, reaching as far down the front of the left leg as possible. More flexible students may be able to bring their fingers to the outside of the front foot. Find your balance and keep the back leg straight. Also, tighten the front leg to support the knee joint.
  5. Twist the torso towards the ceiling, lifting the right arm up. Continue to revolve the navel upward while allowing the torso to stay long and keeping the body in one plane (imagine your whole torso pressed between two planes of glass). Inhale, allowing the left arm to lift you up.
  6. Feel the stretch and the extension of your entire body. At the same time, feel the focus and concentration of your mind. Breathe equally and rhythmically. Step back to Mountain pose and switch sides, or simply switch the direction of your feet.

In my next Yoga Insight I will share details of the Side Angle pose―an asana you can practice right after the Triangle pose.



Reading Suggestions:

  1. Yoga for the Right Balance
  2. Yoga With My Fellow Runners From Kenya
  3. The Many Benefits of Yoga

Updated July 13, 2016

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