This posture comes in many forms. It is a stretch of the knee, quadricep, front of the hip and the femoral nerve. It prepares the lower part of the body for full backbends and Lotus.
Be careful not to strain the knee in this position. Seek length in the mid-thigh and the front of the hip. You will achieve these things by pushing the hip forward, engaging the glutes (butt) to tilt the pelvis backward, and lifting the belly and chest up as if you were backbending (pictured above, top).
Alternately, you can tension (stretch) the nerves in the low spine by creating a spiraling action (pictured above, bottom). Grab the back foot with the opposite hand. Lean forward with a little bit of a twist.
Breath can be normal and relaxed in these positions. Focus on exhalation to help relax the body.
Bow-Leg positions lengthen the hip flexors (front of the hip), an area of the body that is generally very tight. This can have a positive impact on back pain and even digestion. It will also help prepare the hips and pelvis for deep backbends and Lotus.
The Bow-Leg can be done in a number of positions including Pigeon, Splits and even Cobra (see below). Use the position to lengthen the front of the leg, hip and knee. Be careful not to strain the knee.
Excerpt from Ghosh Yoga Practice Manual - Advanced
Scott & Ida are Yoga Acharyas (Masters of Yoga). They are the head teachers of Ghosh Yoga. This blog is about their experience with yoga practice, study and teaching.
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- Understanding Chair Posture
- Lock the Knee History
- It Doesn't Matter If Your Head Is On Your Knee
- Bow Pose (Dhanurasana)
- 5 Reasons To Backbend
- Origins of Standing Bow
- The Traditional Yoga In Bikram's Class
- What About the Women?!
- Through Bishnu's Eyes
- Why Teaching Is Not a Personal Practice