Utthita = extended
Trikona = Triangle
Posture Type: Asymmetrical, A lateral bending posture
Chakra = Anahata, Swadhisthana & Muldhara
Doshas = Vata, Pitta & Kapha
Element = Air, Water, Earth
Tri+Kona+Asana = Three+Angle+Posture
- Stand in Samsthiti position; place your palms on your waist
- Exhale and as you exhale, jump and place your legs 3 to 3 ½ feet apart (in case of any joint issues, avoid jumping and just walk your legs apart and away from each other).
- Take your attention to the mid part of your right heel; dig that firmly into the floor and raise the rest of your foot off the floor, pointing up to the ceiling (heel remains grounded to the floor), rotate your right foot out to the right very slowly; Further, lengthen the right foot by lengthening the arch, the metatarsals, the toes and slowly place the big toe mount on the floor. The moment, the big toe mount touches the floor, stretch the rest of the foot further out. Your arch and metatarsals are active, toes are still up and apart from each other in a stretched manner. Softly place the toes on the floor.
- Right heel should be in line with left heel or in line with the middle of your left foot (check what gives you the best grip).
- Turn your left foot softly to the right (approx. 10 to 40 degree) or if you think you are comfortable not moving your left foot, that is fine too.
- Inhale and while inhaling, lengthen your body as if you are dissecting the upper part of the body from the lower part; This stretch will create a vacuum in your abdominal area. Slowly, begin to shift the hips to the left, simultaneously turn your head to the left too and gaze at extreme left. With the shifting of the hip to the left, the upper part of your body would gradually become parallel to the floor on the right with your left hip rolling up towards the ceiling and hips tucked in towards the anus.
- Your right leg is firm like a pillar. With each movement of your upper body coming to the right, you should increase the firmness of the right leg by pulling the right thigh into the right groin (you should not feel any strain on the knee).
- Left side of your body is in lengthening position from feet to head and the right side of your waist is in flexion position.
- You can manipulate your left heel by sliding it slightly away from the body and the toes towards the body to better your grip and improve your balance.
- The outer side of your left foot will have a tendency to get off the floor, take all the attention to tuck the edges off the left foot on the floor. This will activate the anti-gravity muscles and help make the body light by rolling the left hip further back, pushing the overall body up towards the ceiling and thereby, taking off any stress from your joints.
- Upto this point, you have been working on creating a strong foundation by fixing the parts of your body at the appropriate angles.
- Release your right hand from your waist and glide it down the right leg; let it reach out to the maximum towards the right foot, without disturbing the positioning of any other part of the body. Don’t allow the upper part of the body to collapse forward or jut out backwards. It is a lateral stretch and the body will remain centralized. Once you have reached your farthest point wherever on your right leg, hold on to that part of your leg with a firm grip by pressing your right palm on the leg.
- Release your left hand from waist and lengthen it towards the ceiling. Roll out and stretch the right shoulder to push the chest further up towards the ceiling. There is complete extension and engagement from right palm to the left fingers.
- Work on holding onto the alignment and attempt to move your right hand off the leg and gently place it on the floor (placing the hand on the floor is not as important as maintaining the alignment, the balance and the stretch of the body)
- Both your arms and chest should be in one line. Push your body weight as up as possible towards the ceiling while keeping the lower part of your body firmly grounded to the floor. This will allow you to experience sublime lightness in your body.
- Rotate your head towards the left and upward (the head rotation has to be from the shoulder and the neck, turn it to the left and look at your left thumb. Your spine is vertically extended; your upper back along with both the arms are horizontally stretched. You are also trying to raise your spine up in the air. Keep your kneecaps and thigh muscles stretched up towards the groin. You are pushing your right quadricep muscles and glutes at the back; you are rolling your left quadriceps and glutes up towards the sky; your hips are constantly tucked in.
- Do a mental check by making sure that the upper part of the body, from your crown to the anus, is in one imaginary line.
- Hold the posture for 15-20 seconds with normal breathing. Gradually start increasing the holding time, without compromising on the alignment of the posture.
- Turn your head and look down. Inhale and raise your right arm off its holding position. Repeat in the left side.
Strengthening the lower extremities
- Utthita Trikonasana works on the big muscles of lower extremities thereby strengthening the leg muscles, making its grip firm on the floor.
- Any minor deformities in the legs can be corrected by regularly practicing this posture.
- The posture is recommended for strengthening the knee as well
Flat foot, Achillies Tendon, Plantar Fascia
- The rolling of the foot as detailed in point 3, is one of the best practices for the above problems and this can be done anywhere and at any time.
Deals with the stress of tight shoes / sandal
- Tight shoes and high heels keep your legs in a stressed and cramped position, not allowing it to breath freely and thereby, it not able to nourish itself with enough blood flow. This will help nourish that area and activate many nerve ends in your foot.
- Vertical lengthening of the spine not only helps align vertebrae to its neutral position but rejuvenate it completely, rejuvenating your mind and body.
- It also stretches the spine and spinal nerves laterally
Core & Love Handles
- The lateral lengthening engagement rejuvenates the part of the core and starts the process of toning up.
- The love handles do not love this posture much as they start disappearing soon with engaged practice. There is contraction in one side of the abdomen (the one facing the floor & extension on the other-the one facing the ceiling).
Upper Back Strengthening
- Neck is strengthened and toned up.
- Arms’ stiffness is removed and range of motion increases.
- Engagement of the core as well as the hips help strengthen the lower back muscles.
- The posture opens up one side of the hip while flexes the other. This helps increase the flexibility of the hip.
- The multi-dimensional advantages mentioned above would benefit pregnant women greatly. As a precautionary measure, one needs to be careful about the balance and should ideally take support to remain stable in the posture during 2nd and 3rd trimester.
- Stretches the hamstrings and inner thigh on the front leg, the outer hip and calf on the back leg, and the torso and chest.
- Hip Opening
- Deals with foot related problems like flat foot, achillies tendon, plantar facia especially
- In case you experience heel stress, especially on the front foot, your body weight is collapsing sideways to the front foot side, push your body weight up in the air as well as push the outer side of the left foot on the floor and hold on to that with deep breathing.
- One may experience knee pain in case the knee has gone into hyperextension. Push the thigh of the front leg using the support of back hip slightly in front and push the hip at the back to the ceiling. Squeezing the hips further in will add value to the whole process. In case, you find it too complicated to apply, just keep your knee soft and the knee pain will disappear.
- Looking at the thumb of the stretched arms for a longer period of time might create neck pain in case you are holding the posture for a while; you can look straight of down to ease the neck pain while maintaining the alignment of the rest of the body.
Avoid or watch caution or modify in case of:
- Severe spinal problem
- Severe knee injuries
- Weak stature
- Heart problem
- Fluctuating Blood Pressure
- Old people, if not used to some form of exercise should start slow with support of the wall