For those of you looking for a way into the nooks and crannies of your hips, I’ve got you covered today!
This posture helps you to explore the connections between your hips, legs, low back and belly. It will wring your muscles, twisting them in their stretch to help you access rarely-felt areas. Yes, this can be intense – so gather your props so that you can bring that intensity to a level where you can relax. If you find that you cannot relax, you need more props for this one; its as simple as that. This is a yin pose, no effort is used once you are in your pose, so don’t try to suck it up. Sucking it up, enduring your pain, will just lead to injury here. As a yin pose, this might be most effective for your tissues if you do this pose cold. However, due to the advanced nature of this posture and the torque it places on the joints of your lower body, I recommend some warm up first. Any hip opening postures will be helpful, yin or yang. (You might try one of these hip focussed sequences from this blog – Yoga for Exploring the Hips and Low Back, Yoga for Connecting with the Pelvic Floor, Deep, Sweet Hip Opening, Yoga for Comfortable Meditation. To integrate the posture, this pose is best in the middle, not the end of a practice.
To find your way into Reclining Square Pose:
- Sit on your bottom – Position your bolster short end to your bottom behind you
- Bring your shins toward stacked and parallel with the front of your mat. This may mean that you are stacking ankles and knees, it may mean that you are stacking feet. Do what is easily accessible to you.
- If you have knees hanging out in space, prop them with blocks.
- If you need padding for your ankles, use blankets beneath them.
- If you feel like your top foot won’t stay in place, wrap a strap around it and hold the end of the strap with your hand to help keep your foot in place.
- Once your lower body is set, lie back on your bolster. If you are very flexible you will not need the bolster. If you are feeling too much intensity, stack a blanket or two on top of your bolster. Give yourself a blanket pillow if your head and neck need support.
- Now, relax 🙂 Hang out here for at least 2 minutes. Keep your attention on the
sensation. Tracing the connections of that sensation throughout your body, feel it all letting go.
– When you are ready to exit ,do it slowly and mindfully.
– Then take a moment just to feel before taking any counterposes you might need before proceeding to the other side.
– When you move into the rest of your day’s practice, bear in mind what you learned from this pose. It usually a pretty educational experience.