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Hip-Opening Asanas,Yoga,Yoga Asana Library Eka Pada Rajakapotasana -Pigeon Pose

Eka Pada Rajakapotasana -Pigeon Pose

Pigeon pose is a variation of the advanced One-Legged King Pigeon Pose, sharing similar hip alignment and a need for a thoughtful approach. While One-Legged King Pigeon demands precise alignment for its advanced backbend, the forward-bend version of Pigeon can stress the knee and sacrum if done without care. To prevent injury, I start with gradual and safe hip-opening variations. Once your hips are open, crafting a well-balanced Pigeon benefits your hips and lower back. Consistent practice brings ease to sitting, walking, and standing in the lower half.

Benefits Of Pigeon Pose

  1. Increases hip mobility.
  2. Utilizes core strength to maintain level hips.
  3. Calms the mind.
  4. Targets the psoas muscle and hip flexors.

Instructions (Step-by-Step)

  1. Start on all fours.
  2. Bring right knee forward toward right wrist.
  3. Experiment with placement for a comfortable outer hip stretch.
  4. Ensure right ankle is in front of left hip.
  5. Slide left leg back, pointing toes with heel toward the ceiling.
  6. Scissor hips together, drawing legs toward each other.
  7. Use support under right buttock if needed to keep hips level.
  8. Inhale, come onto fingertips, lengthen spine, draw navel in, and open chest.
  9. Exhale, walk hands forward, lower upper body towards the floor.
  10. Rest forearms and forehead on the mat.
  11. Stay for 5 breaths or longer, releasing tension in the right hip.
  12. To exit, push back through hands, lift hips, and move leg back to all fours.
  13. Repeat on the other side.

Common Mistakes Of Pigeon Pose

  1. Rotate your rear leg neutrally instead of outward.
  2. Tuck toes and lift thigh to square hips.
  3. Avoid collapsing into the hip of the front bent knee; maintain a square hip position.
  4. Some struggle to align shins with the front of the mat, risking knee damage.
  5. Tuck a folded towel under the right buttocks and thigh to realign hips and knees.
  6. This reduces pressure and minimizes the risk of knee damage over time.

Precautions Of Pigeon Pose

  1. Do NOT perform if you have low or high blood pressure.
  2. Avoid if affected by insomnia, hypertension, or migraines.
  3. Do NOT practice with serious low back or neck injuries.

Modifications

  1. Excessive tightness and limited mobility in the hips and thighs.
  2. Excessive discomfort in the knees.
  3. Weakened or underdeveloped core.
  4. Excessive tension or pinching in the back.
  5. Discomfort or restriction in the shoulders.

Variations

  1. Transform it into a backbend by keeping the arms straight and lifting the chest instead of lowering the head to rest on the mat.
  2. Explore the Figure Four version:
    • Sit with knees bent, feet flat, arms behind for support.
    • Cross right ankle over left knee, keeping the foot flexed.
    • Walk the left foot closer to your hip for a deeper stretch.
  3. Alternatively, try the Figure Four lying on your back:
    • Cross right ankle over left knee.
    • Hold the back of your left thigh, drawing it towards you.
    • Repeat on the other side.

Pigeon Pose For Beginners

Tips For Beginners

  1. Boost mobility by squeezing knees together and actively engaging the glutes.
  2. Increase stretch intensity by bringing the front shin more parallel to the top of the mat.

Practice Pigeon Pose For Beginners By Following These Steps

  1. Start in Downward Facing Dog.
  2. Lift right leg into Down Dog Split.
  3. Bend right knee and bring it forward, placing it outside your right hand.
  4. Left knee to the mat, ensuring the foot points straight back.
  5. Square hips to the front of the mat.
  6. Use padding under the right hip for comfort.
  7. Optionally, bend forward over the right leg, keeping hips square.
  8. To release, come back up with hands in line with hips.
  9. Step back to Downward Facing Dog.
  10. Repeat on the other side.

Learn this pose perfectly under our certified yoga trainer. Join our online yoga classes now. Browse More Hip-Opening Yogasanas and complete Yogasanas Library.

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