AnatomyAbs, Ankles, Feet, Hips, Knees, Shoulders, Spine, Wrists
Pose TypeCore, Standing
Utkatasana (Oot-kah-TAHS-anah) utkata = awkward
- Opens the chest cavity for a deeper breath
- Strengthens the core
- Improves balance and stability
- Strengthens the entire spine; ankle, knee, hip, and shoulder joints; gluteals; lower extremity musculature
- High or low blood pressure
- Respiratory complications, as this posture requires increased oxygen consumption
- Low back pathologies
- Ankle, knee, hip, or shoulder injury
- Grounding down through your feet, inhale and draw your arms up to frame your ears.
- Exhale and begin to break at the hips, feeling the weight transfer into the heels. Sit the hips back as you bend your knees and move into a high-squat position.
- Keep the torso lifted and the crown reaching upward. Do not allow the knees to drift over the toes.
- Slightly tuck the tail and draw the abdominals in toward your spine.
- Keep your head in a neutral position and gaze forward.
- Hold this pose for 5-10 slow breaths.
- To exit: Inhale and press through your feet to extend your legs and return to Tadasana (Mountain pose). Exhale and release your arms to your sides.
MODIFY OR REPLACE
- Rise to standing on an inhale and sink back into the posture on an exhale.
- Keep your arms extended in front of you.
- Place your hands at the hips or heart center.
- Release and hinge forward into Uttanasana at any time.
- Lift your chest and draw your shoulders together to open the chest.
- Keep your knees and thighs parallel.
- Hinge first at the hips and keep the abdominals drawn up and in toward the spine.
- On each inhale, feel your chest expand and your spine lengthen.
- On each exhale, deepen your posture by squatting further.
- Revolved Chair pose (Pavritta Utkatasana)
WATCH OUT FOR
- Knee strain or pain
- Shoulder strain or pain
- Knees drifting over the toes