Extended Side Angle
Strengthens and stretches the legs, knees, and ankles. Stretches the groin, spine, waist, chest and lungs, and shoulders. Stimulates abdominal organs. Increases stamina and opens the entire side body, creating a stretch through the side of the torso (quadratus lumborum and obliques)
1. From standing with your hands on your hips, step your right foot back and angle your right foot to about 9:00 so the outer edge of your foot is in line with the short edge of the mat, figure A. Keep your left foot pointing forward and bend your left leg getting as close to parallel to the floor as possible, keeping your knee over the ankle, with the left shin perpendicular to the floor.
2. With the right outer edge of your foot connecting to the mat, open your hips so they are square with the long edge of the mat and contract your thigh muscles as you tuck the tail bone under.
3. Raise your arms out to the side, so they are parallel to the floor, palms facing the floor. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and relax your shoulders away from your ears.
4. Place your left forearm on the left leg or a block (figure B) and reach the right hand over, extending the left side long, as in figure A and B. Gaze up at the hand if you are able.
5. Hold for 5 breaths or 1 minute.
6. Repeat on other side.
1. If it bothers your neck to gaze at your hand, then simply gaze straight ahead.