How to Create a Sequence Based on the One-Legged Pigeon Pose

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Eka Pada Rajakapotasana, or One-Legged King Pigeon pose, is a beautiful and (very) deep back-bending posture. This challenging pose requires a great deal of anatomical intelligence, flexibility, and core strength to reach its fullest expression safely and safely.

It is not possible to achieve this posture in just one session. Creating a sequence based on it does not guarantee that you will be able to do it. It’s okay. You can still practice. You will become more adept at this pose if you continue to practice.

Here is a breakdown of the physical elements that are important to consider, as well as suggestions for preparatory postures. Warm up your entire body, then isolate these body parts in order to create a heart-opening sequence towards the One-Legged Pigeon Pose.

Stretch Your Shoulders

Highly flexible shoulders are required to perform an overhead grip in any backbend. Your sequence should include lots of shoulder releases to prepare you for this challenging arm position.

To prepare your shoulders for Eka Pada Rajakapotasana, you can use the Gomukhasana Arms (Cow Face Pose), Garudasana Arms (Eagle Pose), and Paschima Namaskarasana.

Open The Heart

You will need to warm up and prepare your chest and spine properly for One-Legged King Pigeon as it is a deep backbend. What is the best way to prepare for this posture? Heart openers galore!

Start with gentle spine stretches to warm it up. To prepare your spine, you can do poses like Cat/Cow and side body hurts, such as Parighasana or Gate Pose.

You can add more backbends as you gain heat, such as Setu Bandhasana(Bridge Pose), Ustrasana(Camel Pose), Natarjasana(Dancer’s Pose), and Urdhva Dhanurasana (“Wheel Pose”).

Release the Hips

The One-Legged Pigeon Pose is not only a deep backbend but also a hip opener. (Anyone who has ever done Pigeon Prep in a Yin Class knows this well!) Practice hip opening poses to prepare your body for an external rotation of the joint.

Vrksasana, Agnistambhasana or Knee-to-Ankle Pose (Firelog), Baddha konasana, and Pigeon Prep are excellent options for releasing your hips in order to prepare your body for a peak posture.

Get Squared

It would be best if you kept your hips squared up and facing the top of the mat when doing Eka Pada Rajakapotasana. This will keep your spine aligned during the backbend. This concept can be ingrained into your muscles by performing a series of postures with squared hips during your pre-practice sequence.

Use poses like Virabhadrasana I, Anjaneyasana, and Eka Pada adho mukha svanasana to square the hips towards the floor.

Turn On the Core

When you begin to open your center of gravity, your integral system is needed to protect your lower back. It is important to fire up your core in order to be able to do deeper backbends. This will ensure that you maintain a safe alignment when practicing back bending.

Use gentle core positions that will activate and awaken it rather than exhausting it. Use poses like Adho Mukha Dandasana, Paripurna Nvasana, and Core Plank to awaken your core gently.

Ascend the Peak

You will be ready to fully express Eka Pada Rajakapotasana once you have warmed up all your body parts and prepared them. As you move towards this posture, be sure to flow slowly and control.

As you move towards this deep backbend, be mindful of your breathing and ensure that it is slow, full, and consistent. Props can be used as needed (i.e., Use a block to sit on or a strap between your feet and hands to make it easier to move into the full variation.

As with any yoga pose, you should always be cautious and avoid forcing your body into positions that cause severe pain and discomfort.

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