The Pigeon Pose or one legged king pigeon pose
The pigeon pose falls under the category of intermediate yoga poses.
Each yoga pose starts from another pose. This pose can be practiced from different postures. They are the full lotus pose or the half lotus pose, downward dog or one leg downward dog, cat pose or even the child pose.
Pigeon Pose Yoga
Begin by placing your body in the downward dog pose (on all fours, with the knees directly under your hips, hands shoulder width apart and slightly ahead of your shoulders). Bring your right knee forward so it is positioned at the back of your right wrist. Now slowly bring your right foot to the front of your left knee ensuring that your right shin is under your torso. Extend your left leg, ensure your knee is straight and the front of your thigh is touching the ground.
The right buttock should rest on the floor and the right heel should be placed in front of the left hip. The left leg should be straight and can be angled inwardly.
Exhale and rest your torso on the right leg. Stretch your arms and relax for a few breaths.
Slide your arms back and push your fingertips against the floor and lift your upper body off the ground. Press your tailbone down and forward so your back is lengthened and push your pubis towards the naval. Keep your pelvis firm and lift the fore and back ribs. Drop your head back and ensure that your back is not shortened.
Remain in this position for 30 seconds and repeat the process starting from the downward facing dog with your left leg.
Benefits of the pigeon pose
- This pose stretches and opens the hips. It stretches the lower back and the leg muscles.
- Stretches explained anatomically:
- The muscles that are stretched are gluteus minimus, piriformis, the orbturator internus, the superior gemellus and the quadrates femoris.
- The knee muscles and ligaments like the popliteus, arcuate popliteal ligament, the lateral collateral and medial collateral ligament are also stretched.
- It stretches the thighs, groin abdomen, chest and shoulders.
- Stimulates the abdominal organs and stretches the neck
- Therapeutically, it has a great effect on the urinary bladder.
As a beginners tip
Perform the pose to the best of your ability. It may not be easy to flow into it straight away. So you can get additional support from your partner or instructor or even use props for support.