Yoga Pose: Extended Side Plank (Utthita Vasiṣṭhāsana)

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  • Extended Side Plank

  • Utthita Vasiṣṭhāsana

  • utthita = extended
  • vasiṣṭha = name of a sage
  • āsana = posture
  • Category:
    Arm and Leg Support / Balancing
  • Difficulty:
    Expert
  • Description:

    From an arm balance position the weight of the body is supported on one side and distributed equally between the bottom arm and foot while the other (top) arm lifts with fingers spread wide and the other (top) foot stacks on top. The top foot is raised up toward the sky and the top hand reaches over to grasp the toes. The grounded (bottom) foot is flat and gripping the earth from the outside edge of the foot. If flexibility of the foot is limited then instead of gripping the earth with a flat foot, the weight of the body is balanced on the side edge of the foot that is flexed instead of flat. The arm supporting the weight of the body and the grounded foot actively press into the floor as the shoulder blades firm against the back and then widen away from the spine drawing toward the tailbone. Bandhas are engaged to maintain balance and stability. The crown of the head reaches away from the neck and the gaze is up towards the hand.

  • Benefits:

    Strengthens the arms, belly and legs. Stretches and strengthens the wrists. Stretches the backs of the legs. Improves sense of balance and focus.