This class focuses on forward bends in the Iyengar method and is intended for students that have completed a beginners course at a certified Iyengar yoga studio. Pixie Lillas guides students with 3-9 months experience through a forward bend session which accommodates various levels of flexibility.
The class allows you to build on the work that you would have already done in a beginners course.
Stand up tall and straight, place your feet close together, with your heels and big toes touching. Imagine as if you are standing with your back against the wall. Extend your whole body from the heels up through the crown of your head.
Stand a couple of feet away from the wall with your back to it. Fold into Uttanasana and plant your hands on the floor. Then, activate your arms, open up your shoulders and collarbones, and walk your feet up the wall until your legs are parallel to the floor.
Keep the toes and kneecap of your left leg pointed forward and, keeping your spine straight and long, stretch over your leg. Place your left hand on your ankle or on a block next to your foot. Look up towards your extended right arm.
Place your feet one leg-length apart, your back foot angled out slightly. Keep your legs straight as you start to fold over your front leg, maintaining a concave spine for as far into the bend as possible.
Place your forearms flat on the floor next to a wall and interlock your fingers behind the back of your skull. Keeping your head on the floor and your back straight, start to walk your feet closer toward your trunk. Straighten your back and pull your hips up to capacity.
This can also be done with your feet to the wall.
Bend your left knee so your foot points straight back as you extend your right leg forward. Release your spine as you reach out to grab a hold of your extended foot. Use a belt if necessary.
Repeat on both sides.
Bring your feet as close as possible to your pelvis and join them together. Straighten your back and let gravity pull your knees down toward the floor. If necessary, use a strap to hold your feet in place.
Use support under buttocks if your inner groins roll backward. Kneecaps and all ten toes face the ceiling. Keep your hands by your by hips, fingers pointing forwards. Lengthen your spine.
Once you have mastered these foundations, you can also bend forward while reaching your feet with your hands. Use a belt if necessary.
Bend your legs and bring your feet over to the left. Place your left hand on your top thigh and use it as a lever to help you deepen the twist. The right hand is planted behind your back. Extend through your crown.
Activate your arms and shoulders as you lift your body up perpendicular to the floor. Use blankets or bolsters to support your shoulders. Make sure the back of your neck stays relaxed and maintains its natural curve.
Activate your shoulders and lift your body up into a straight line. Place your hands on your back to help you keep your balance. Keeping your body straight and your hips aligned, bring one foot down behind your head.
Use support under your shoulders if necessary. Keeping your shoulders open, lift your hips up high above your head, dropping your feet down behind you. Place your hands on your back to help keep it from rounding.
Lie down on the floor. Spread your arms and legs slightly at your side. Relax and concentrate on your breath.
Save PDF and print
You are welcome to download the PDF of the sequence and print and distribute it freely. You may have to wait up to 30 seconds for the PDF to generate. Please credit the teacher who created it. All illustrations from Dona Holleman’s ‘Yoga Darśana’, RIMYI Institute texts and Yoga Vastu illustrators for original asana drawings.
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