Supta Padangustasana

English Name : Reclining Big Toe Pose
Step by Step Instructions :
Lie supine on the floor, legs extended.
Bend your right knee into your chest and place your right thumb and bunny fingers around the big toe.
Without disturbing your left leg, actively stretch and raise the right leg until it forms a 90-degree angle to the floor.

If you’re unable to straighten both legs, or if your right buttock lifts off the floor, *use strap to assist*.

As you press the front of your left thigh into the floor, turn it inward so that the inner thigh remains grounded, keeping the left leg extended. If the front of the left thigh pops up, pause and press it back down.

Extend your right leg towards the ground, making sure that your right buttock is grounded. Move the right thighbone down to ground the right hip socket, do not drop your feet to the ground. Also keep your shoulder blades on the floor. Broaden across the chest and collar bones, let go of any tension in the face, neck and throat. Now bend your right elbow a bit and see whether you can bring your right foot closer to your head. Go slowly so that you don’t lose the extension of your left inner leg and the length in your right waist. The closer your right foot comes toward your head, the more you have to press your left thigh down and your right hip grounded into the floor. Let all of these actions determine how high to take the right leg, spread your awareness throughout all the aspects of the pose while stretching that leg.
Hold the pose for 5 breaths, then bring the leg back to vertical and slowly lower down towards the left leg.
Repeat on the left.
** Variations
Video :
Muscles Activated :
–   Back muscles
–   Hamstrings
–   Hip Flexors (psoas)
Benefits :
–   Physical
o   Stretches hips, inner thighs, hamstrings and calves
o   Alleviates stiffness in lower back and some kinds of backache
o   Aligns pelvis
o   Relieves arthritis pain in hips, knees, sciatica and menstrual discomfort
o   Stimulates the prostate gland
o   Improves digestion
o   Therapeutic for high blood pressure, flat feet, and infertility
–   Mental
o   Calms the mind
o   Relieves stress
–   Spiritual
o   Stimulates the root (Muladhara), sacral (Svadhisthana) and Solar Plexus (Manipura) chakras.
Precaution & Contra-indications :
–   Hamstring tear
–   Menstruation
–   Pregnancy
–   Diarrhea
–   High blood pressure
–   If you have a tight thoracic spine: Put a folded blanket under your head
Counter Pose :
–   Supta Padangustasana
Lyndalou (200hr Yoga TTC, 07/14 Weekend)