This month, we’re featuring Trikonasana – or Triangle pose. Trikonasana, like most yoga poses, combines a variety of elements into one, lovely back and core strengthener. Because it’s a fairly gentle twist, it maintains back flexibility and works your full spine. The twisting motion also works as a massage to your internal organs, helping them rid toxins from your body.
It also brings connection with the lower half of your body. Though you stand on your legs every day, it’s easy to neglect their power and grace. Incorporating Trikonasana into your yoga practice will build strength and steadiness into your legs and feet.
Because Trikonasana pulls your body in every direction, it cultivates balance and evenness in your body. It magnificently expands and creates space in your torso, arms, and legs.
Trust me: before you know it, you’ll come to crave this pose, falling into it in any and all yoga practices!
Benefits of Trikonasana
It opens just about everything – hips, groins, hamstrings, shoulders, chest, and spine – making it an integral part to any yoga flow.
It stimulates abdominals in a friendlier way than many core exercises.
It improves alignment and stability, as you gradually are able to open your body into the full extension.
It stretches and strengthens your thighs, knees, and ankles.
It relieves backaches!
A steady triangle begins with a comfortable stride. Starting from warrior 2, turn your front toes so they face the top of your mat.
Bring your arms to a T position and extend strongly through all 10 fingertips. They should feel like they’re growing stronger and more vibrant with each breath.
Next, pop your back hip toward the back of your mat, then inhale deeply as you reach forward with your front hand. Make sure to keep your legs and hips steady as you reach!
Exhale as you slowly fold at your hip crease, stretching your front hand to your shin or a block. Be careful to avoid dumping all of your weight into this hand. Your abs and legs should be able to support you entirely.
Finally, lift your back arm to the sky, directly above your other shoulder. Your body should feel as if it could fit in the narrow space between two panes of glass, which means you’re going to need to rotate your upper shoulder and heart to the sky. Take a full round of breath here, enjoying the expansion throughout your chest, lungs, and heart.
A couple things to watch out for when practicing trikonasana. If you have low blood pressure, take your time coming out of this pose. If you have high blood pressure, gaze downward, resting your top hand on your hip. Got a neck problem? It’s totally okay to keep your gaze forward, rather than twisting up toward the ceiling.
Sometimes, a pose just isn’t your jam. If your body still needs time to get comfortable with trikonasana, use a block (on any height) to support your lower hand. This actually removes pressure from your front leg, hips, and shoulders. Wave us over if you’ve never felt confident in this pose; we’d love to help you!
If you’re looking to take this pose even further, try extending your top arm over your ear, in line with your side body and pointing toward the front of your mat. Lift your bottom arm up to meet it, as if you were holding a large beach ball. This is one of the best ways to check that you’re truly using your leg and ab muscles, rather than relying on your lower arm to support you.
Consider this complex and challenging pose an ongoing experiment. Explore different strides, play around with the rotation in your pelvis, and let your breath guide you into the pose. Always maintain a sense of playfulness and curiosity!