Pigeon Pose is the western name for Kapotasana. In Sanskrit Language, Kapota means Pigeon, while Asana means Pose or Position. Many yoga poses are known for their hip-opening capabilities, but no other posture is as effective as the Pigeon Pose.
While some poses stretch and open the outer muscles, others only address the inner muscles like flexors; Pigeon Pose is the only pose that effectively loosens and stretches both inner and external parts of the hips.
For this reason, this pose is also considered the king of all hip opening postures. It rotates the external muscles in the front leg and simultaneously stretches the Psoas in the rear leg. As we change the leg positions in this pose, it actively works on both legs, which is impossible with other yoga postures.
The Idea of The Pigeon Pose
The Pigeon has three different variations, the basic, the mermaid, and the one-legged posture. It is indispensable to master the basic pose before you move on to the other variants.
This is a challenging yoga pose that requires a tremendous amount of accuracy and flexibility, so it is advisable to proceed with ease and caution to avoid any kind of injuries(especially in the sacrum and knees).
The different variants of the Pigeon Pose are considered some of the best forward bend and backbend exercises in the whole yoga curriculum. Before starting with this pose, make sure you have mastered all the preparatory poses and have enough hip flexibility.
Steps: How To Perform A Pigeon Pose
Start by moving into the Downward Facing Dog Posture; use all four limbs, with palms facing down, put your hands in the front (pushed downwards) while simultaneously pushing the legs too. Start straightening the legs to form a “V” shape (upside-down); to do so; the hips should be pushed towards the ceiling.
In the next step, while raising your right leg upwards, bring the right knee on the backside of the right wrist. Now, rotate the right shin to maintain a position parallel to the forward direction. Start bringing the right leg towards the front of the floor while stretching the left leg straight to the rear side (make it touch the ground).
Bring the right knee outward in the right direction, as far away from the hips as possible; keep the right leg flexed in the direction of your shin. Slowly, bring down your buttocks on the floor; distribute the body weight evenly on both hips; if you find it too hard, you can place a folded towel below the right hip. Now, with both of your hands placed under the shoulders, mildly press your palms against the floor while stretching the spine in a linear position. You have now entered the basic Pigeon Posture.
In the next step, exhale deeply, and lower the torso on the right leg, with arms stretched in the front side and elbows in a minor bent position. Cross your forearms and place your forehead on them; if it seems difficult, you can use the yoga blocks or only stretch as per your comfort level. Don’t force yourself; it is during this step when most practitioners injure themselves.
Gradually enter a relaxed state by bringing the shoulders back, hold the posture for five to ten breaths. Then, simply repeat the same steps for the other side of your body.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Long is The Duration of Pigeon Pose?
It’s recommended to do it for a few breaths initially; once you master this pose, you can hold it for as long as five minutes. Keep in mind that it’s also one of the best yoga poses for hip flexors and spinal muscles.
When To Avoid Performing Pigeon Pose?
Stay away from this pose if you are suffering from knee or hip injuries. Immediately stop this posture if you feel pain anywhere. Although this pose isn’t entirely challenging, it does require you to go into some interesting postures, which can cause discomfort for some and relieve it for others. While we can’t determine which you’ll fall into, be careful.
Can Pigeon Pose Help With Increasing Height?
Yes, it is an excellent exercise for gaining height. Remember, though, that It is known for causing knee and hip injuries; always perform this pose under an expert’s supervision. Not following this recommendation can cause some pretty bad irritation to those areas.
The pigeon pose is known to increase the motion of the femur (hip socket). It’s also regularly helpful at elongating the hip flexors. Plus, it is a training pose for more advanced backbends and the Lotus Pose. Moreover, it helps to calm the mind and improve concentration.
Yogis also use this pose to enhance their digestion and overall digestive health. Make certain to take care of yourself in other ways, too, not just with yoga.
You can’t put out a fire while pouring gas on it, can you? If you apply this concept to yoga and your overall health, you’ll be feeling better in no time.