Watch this video to learn more about the dynamics of forward action and extension, and the “squared” position of your hips.
When you lift your leg up and back your dog splits a few things are happening:
- You are accepting a forward action through the leg that is on the ground and the corresponding side of your pelvis.
- You are creating dynamic action through your pelvis, as one hip has the forward action and the opposite hip has the backward extension.
- You are stabilizing the “squared” position of your hips.
- You are creating strength and stability through your arms, shoulders, and chest by balancing the dynamic asymmetry of your legs. This causes your upper body to “think” twice as hard.
Practice with the wall.
Take your Downward Dog position with your feet placed close to the wall and your hands extending away. Lift one leg up and place that foot (the base of your toes) against the wall. You will find this placement of your foot on the wall accentuates the dynamic action of your hips, so you really feel the distinct flexion of your standing leg and the extension of your lifting leg. Your thigh muscles will grow stronger and your joints will open correspondingly.
This is a preliminary step for developing strength and flexibility for almost all asanas– in particular Forward Folds, Headstand, Handstand, Forearm Balance, Splits, and the family of Warrior One poses.
Give it a try. Stay for at least five breaths on each side. Rest in child’s pose between sides to give your body time to regenerate a steady with them of breath find columnists centeredness so that your mind is present for the distinct sensations that you will discover on the second side.
Feel free to post your practice!