My first encounter with Eagle pose was in a Hot Yoga class many moons ago. I had know idea what I was in for and why wrapping my body around itself was even beneficial. All I remember thinking about was the heat and the question swirled in my head about why am I even doing this to myself....lol I am sure many of my students can soo relate.
Now that I am a little more seasoned I, of course, love this pose! I see it helping my students that suffer from sciatic and arthritis. I feel that opening across my shoulders when I am in the pose and know my shoulders would thank me if they could. Eagle has help my ankles get much stronger than in my running and aerobic days. So, let's explore the Eagle pose.
Eagle pose strengthens and stretches the ankles and calves. You also get an amazing stretch in your upper back and shoulders as well as your hips and thighs. Eagle improves your concentration and improves your balance. It offers circulation into your major joints (ankles, knees, hips, shoulders and wrists) which counters swelling and arthritis. It also a great therapy for asthma, sciatica and lower back pain.
1. Stand tall in Tadasana (Mountain Pose).
2. Inhale reach the arms out at shoulder height.
3. Reach the right arm out front and then stack the left arm on top. Bend the elbows so the backs of the hands face one another and then bring your palms together. Keep the elbows at shoulder height. Thumbs should face your face.
4. Inhale lift your head and chest. Exhale sit into Chair Pose. Tuck your tailbone underneath you.
5. Lift the right leg up and over the left leg. Squeeze the thighs in towards one another and wrap the foot around to the back of the leg. If you are unable to wrap the foot around then bring your big toe down next to your ankle.
6. Hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Breathe.
7. Release and repeat on the other side.
Find your inner eagle and soar through this pose. As always your body will thank you.
Top Photo: Akilah Richards of Execumama @ Sweet Water Wellness Center.