Yoga Practice: Explore the Fundamentals of Triangle Pose Practiced at a Wall
Article At A Glance
Triangle Pose is an Iconic yoga pose but is also quite a complex asana. Explore the fundamentals of Triangle Pose with these practice tips and the support of practicing Triangle at the wall.
Utthita Trikonasana (Extended Triangle Pose) is a foundational standing yoga posture that is ubiquitous in just about all styles and classes of yoga. It’s a powerful posture that works the full body and creates space in the legs, hips, spine, and chest.
But even though it is considered to be a “foundational” pose, it’s really quite a complex asana with a lot happening in many different joints of the body. When you incorporate breath and mindfulness into the posture, it can sometimes become overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to be!
By starting with the basics and exploring the fundamentals of the pose, you can learn and grow in Triangle Pose in no time. Props are always exceptional tools for exploring poses, and Utthita Trikonasana is no exception.
So grab your mat, find some wall space, and have a block nearby to explore the fundamentals of Triangle Pose.
Step-by-Step Instructions to Explore the Fundamentals of Triangle Pose Practiced at the Wall
- Set up against a wall so that the short edge of your mat is touching the wall. Have a yoga block within arm’s reach.
- Start standing facing the long edge of your mat with your right foot closest to the wall. Walk your feet apart from each other to draw your legs into a wide stance in which you start to feel a stretch in your inner thighs but still feel stable in your base.
- Turn the toes of your right foot forward to face the wall and bring your right hand to rest on the wall.
- Press your hand against the wall and lengthen both sides of your torso. Keep equal length on both sides of your waist and tilt your hips away from the wall toward the back of your mat. Allow this hinging of your hips to draw your torso closer toward your right leg without compromising the length of your spine.
- You can stay as you are or, if you’d like, widen the stance in your legs and slide your hand down the wall to a lower point to hinge forward with your torso slightly farther.
- If you’d like, you can transition from your hand on the wall to lowering your hand onto a block (on any height setting that works for you) on the pinky side of your right foot.
- Lower your left arm by your side to rest over your left waist, hip, and thigh. Spiral and rotate your shoulders, chest, and upper back toward the left side of your mat. Twist your heart open and strive to stack your left lung over your right.
- If you’d like, you can reach your left arm to the sky and spread your fingers wide as you send energy up your whole arm.
- Turn your head in any direction that feels comfortable for your neck.
- Hold for a few long, deep breaths before releasing and switching sides.
Refine Your Triangle Pose: More Practice Tips
- Strive to hinge from your hips rather than side-bend your spine as you move into the pose. Aim to keep your spine elongated as you practice and let the angling of your torso happen at your hip joint. Throughout the posture, reach the crown of your head and tailbone in opposite directions to find length in your back body.
- Keep your weight evenly distributed in both of your feet. Press down through the pinky side of your back foot to avoid collapsing on your inner arch.
- Ever so slightly, internally rotate your back thigh and allow your pelvis to minutely turn forward to face toward the wall.
- Press down evenly into the tripod base of your feet. Root into the mounds beneath your big toes and pinky toes and your heels. Let this rooted base create the foundation for your whole pose.
- You can choose to straighten or bend your knees—choose the option that works most comfortably for your body.
- Activate your core strongly. Draw your frontal hip points toward each other as if tightening a drawstring around your hips. Cinch in around your whole waistline as if tightening a corset. Energetically hug your navel toward your spine and up and in toward your rib cage.
- Breathe smoothly and evenly as you hold the pose.
Never Underestimate the Fundamentals in Utthita Trikonasana
As our yoga journeys begin or our practices progress, we’re often drawn to and impressed by the “big” and “advanced” postures. We all seem to want to master inversions and arm balances. But the foundational postures are equally as important (if not more so!).
Don’t underestimate the power of the fundamentals. Start with (or return to) the basics to explore the foundational elements in your practice. Triangle Pose is the perfect place to start!