Standing Head to Knee

Dandayamana Janu Sirsasana

Level: Intermediate

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Instructions

1. From Mountain pose, shift your weight to the right foot and slowly bend and lift the left knee in towards your chest, interlacing the fingers just below the kneecap. Stare at one point on the floor or the wall to maintain balance.

2. Move the interlaced fingers from the knee to around the left foot, pulling the leg in towards the torso.

3. Slowly extend the left leg out, kicking the foot into the arms. Keep the shoulders down and back and the chest open.

4. Round the spine, pressing the forehead to the left leg. Let your gaze shift to the kneecap or the floor. Keep the elbows close to your body, and maintain a strong straight standing leg.

5. Breathe and hold for 2-4 breaths.

6. To release: slowly release the leg, inhaling the arms up and the leg down back into mountain alignment.

7. Repeat on the other side.

Benefits + Contraindications

Benefits: Standing Head to Knee pose is a challenging balancing posture which increases concentration and mental focus as well as deeply stretching the backs of the legs.

Contraindications: Recent or chronic injury to the knees, hips, arms or shoulders.

Modifications + Variations

Modifications: Use a yoga strap looped around the foot and held with the hand.

Vinyasa

Use one or more of the following postures to build a sequence leading up to this pose: Hand to Toe, Mountain, Tree.

Use one or more of the following postures to build a sequence ending after this pose: Mountain, Tree, Dancer. [/am4show]

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