How to perform Extended Hand-to-Big-Toe Pose 1
Grab your foot by the toe and straighten your leg, maintaining your Tadasana line. Lengthen through the crown of your head and keep your body from tipping over. Use wall support if you lack the balance. You can also use a belt if you lack hamstring flexibility.
What is Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana 1?
A combination of standing balance and leg extension. This pose is very similar to the first variation of Supta Padangusthasana. In fact, the latter is very useful for cultivating the foundations necessary for Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana.
This pose requires a certain level of flexibility in your hamstrings as well as a sufficient sense of balance. You start by standing in Tadasana, spreading your weight evenly between your feet. Then, maintaining the Tadasana line and keeping one foot grounded and strong, lift your leg up in front of you with the knee bent. Check that your weight hasn’t shifted and your hips are still in neutral. Then grab a hold of your big toe with your hand (or use a belt if you lack the flexibility in your hamstrings) and, keeping your chest and shoulders open and your back straight, extend the leg in front of you.
The steps that it takes to assume Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana each present a challenge for a different part of your body. First, your core muscles are activated and your spine lengthens through the crown of your head. Then, your concentration is put to the test as you balance on one foot. As you extend your leg, your hamstrings get elongated. And, finally, as you open up to the side, you work on improving your hip mobility.
When to use Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana 1?
This asana is beneficial for extending and lengthening the hamstrings and calf muscles, for stabilising and opening your hips, and for toning your abdominal and lower back muscles. A more passive variation would involve the extended foot being supported by a wall. This will help you focus on strengthening your foundations and maintaining the integrity of the pose with less effort.