Utthita Trikonasana (Extended Triangle) is a powerful pose. It requires a strong, wide stance and bringing the legs, pelvis, and shoulders into a balanced alignment. Triangle tones and strengthens the muscles in the legs while removing stiffness in the legs and the hips. It relieves backaches, tightness in the neck and the groin, and strengthens the ankles, the shoulders, and the chest.

The posture is stimulating for the abdominal organs which improve digestion and may help to relieve symptoms of endometriosis, menopause, and chronic back pain.

It’s recommended to warm up the body before coming into this pose.

Preparatory Pose: Tādāsana (Mountain Pose)

Drishti (Gaze): While performing this pose, concentrate your gaze upwards towards the sky

Variations: Use a block underneath the bottom hand or practice near the wall and rest the back foot against the wall as a support

Find a safe variation if you have any of the following conditions:

  • High or Low Blood Pressure
  • Neck Pain (keep the gaze straight ahead and the neck even and long)
  • Heart Condition

The Technique:

  1. Begin standing in Tādāsana
  2. Inhale and step the legs about 3 feet apart
  3. Raise the arms parallel to the floor, in line with the shoulders, palms face down
  4. Turn the right foot out 90 degrees. Turn the left foot in slightly. Engage through the legs.
  5. Exhale and bend the torso towards the right and extend through the torso. Bring the right palm near the right ankle.
  6. If it is accessible to you, draw the right palm or fingertips to rest on the floor behind the ankle
  7. Stretch the left arm up, bringing it in line with the ears
  8. The back of the legs, the back of the best, and the hips should be in a line.
  9. Gently lift the gaze toward the thumb
  10. Keep the right knee engaged by pulling up on the knee-cap
  11. Breathe deep and evenly
  12. Exhale, step back into Tādāsana
  13. Repeat on the left side

Source: Light on Yoga by B.K.S. Iyengar