Wednesday, October 30, 2013

30 Days of Relaxation - Day 13

So our last two days we were folding forward. Now let's start to lay back. Today's Bound Angle Pose requires lots of props so get out all of your pillows, a yoga belt if you have one, and anything else you think you might need to get comfortable.
Enjoy Supported Reclining Bound Angle

(Just about) Everyone's Favorite Pose
 Supported Reclining Bound Angle
Setting up for the pose:
Set up a big pillow pile and practice laying on it a few times to get the angles just right. You should have support under your lumbar spine, blocks/pillows ready to support your knees, a yoga belt, and enough of a pillow that your head does not tilt backward but not so much that you are cranking your head forward either. Below is a basic set-up for Supported Reclining Bound Angle, used as a starting point when I teach Restorative Yoga at Yoga North):

Set-up for Reclining Bound Angle

To come into the pose:
Sit on the floor in Bound Angle pose (souls together and drawn in towards the body, knees out to the sides). Fix a belt/strap loosely around your waist, stretch it to the inside of the thighs and then wrap it around the back side of the feet/ankles (as shown). Lay back on your bolster/pillow pile. Allow your knees to open out to the sides, resting them on bolsters, blocks or blankets for comfort. Draw your feet in closer to the body by tightening the belt as much as is comfortable. Let the arms rest out at your sides, palms facing up. There should be no strain on the shoulders or neck from the arms pulling down towards the floor. Support the arms with blocks, blankets or pillows as needed. Close the eyes and try to keep your attention on watching the breath. Stay as long as you like.

Here's an example from Yoga Journal of a super luxurious Reclining Bound Angle. 

To come out of the pose:
Loosen the belt, remove any props you have stacked on the body, bring the knees together, possibly roll to one side and/or sit up slowly.