Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Protect your knees in floor poses

This week we are looking at protecting your knees in some floor poses.

Lotus pose - If you have knee issues I would recommend that you avoid Lotus pose.  Even if you do not have knee issues Lotus pose requires a great deal of external rotation of the hip joint.  If your hips are tight then your knee joint will take the strain and this has the potential to cause serious injury.  

Once you have flexibility in the hips from standing poses you may work with Baddha Konasana and Janu sirsasana, using modifications if you need to as detailed below.  Never force yourself into the poses.

Baddha konasana (Cobbler's Pose) sit on a block (or two) bring the soles of your feet together and draw them close into your body, holding onto your feet or your ankles or shins if holding your feet makes you round forward.  To modify the pose have your feet further away from your body as in the Yin Yoga Butterfly and support your outer thighs with cushions.

Yin Yoga Butterfly variation

Janu Sirsasana (Head to knee forward bend) - sit on a block with your legs outstretched. Bend your right knee and place the sole of your right foot against your left thigh.  Twist to the left so that your breast bone lines up with your outstretched left leg.  Hinging from the groin fold forward easing back if you are straining in the pose.  A cushion under the bent leg will help reduce strain on the knee.  Repeat second side.

Other poses that you need to be aware of your knees in include:- 

Pigeon Pose - if you have trouble with your knees in this pose, it might be better to practice a variation in which you tuck your front heel under your buttock rather than take your foot out to the side and support yourself with cushions.  To practice the pose come onto all fours and slide your right knee forward to your right wrist.  Slide your left leg back and elevate your hips on cushions.  If you need to place your hands on blocks.  Inhale lift through your chest.Hold for a few breaths.   Come back to all fours and repeat second side.

Please also see:-
'Protect your knees in standing poses - Part 1'

'Protect your knees in standing poses - Revolved triangle and revolved side angle- Part 2'

Janet x

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