Yoga pose: Baddha Konasana

Translation: Baddha = caught, bound, restrained. Kona = angle. Restrained angle pose (known also as the cobbler pose)

Atmanjali mudra in baddha konasana BKS IyengarIn this asana one sits on the floor with feet together, heels near the perineum, catching the feet with the hands and widening the thighs until the knees touch the floor on both sides.

This is how Indian cobblers sit. Regular practice of this asana increases the blood flow to the abdomen, pelvis, and back and stimulate them. It keeps the kidneys, the prostate and the urinary bladder healthy and is very beneficial for pregnant women to ease the pain during labour and prevent varicose veins. Baddha Konasana helps to treat arthritis of the knee, hip and pelvic joints.

Benefits of this asana:

  • Keeps the kidneys and prostate gland healthy
  • Helps to treat urinary tract disorders
  • Reduces sciatic pain
  • prevents Hernia
  • Relieves heaviness and pain in the testicles
  • Keeps the ovaries healthy
  • Corrects irregular menstruation
  • Helps to open blocked fallopian tubes and reduces vaginal irritation
  • Relieves menstrual pain and checks heavy menstruation.

Caution:

Do not practice this asana if you have a displaced or prolapsed uterus.

Instructions:

  1. Sit in Dandasana (staff pose)
  2. Bend the knees and bring the heels towards the perineum. Press the heels and the soles of the feet together.Baddha konasana upright variation BKS Iyengar
  3. The outer sides of both feet should rest on the floor and the back of the heels should touch the perineum.
  4. Widen the knees away from the hips and down to touch the floor.
  5. Interlock the fingers and clasp around the feet.
  6. Sit straight, spine erect, lift the chest and roll the shoulder bones back. Look straight ahead.
  7. Learn to open the groins and loosen the hip joints.
  8. Hold the pose for as long as you can. Breath evenly.
  9. You can stay in this stage or continue further to the full pose:
  10. Baddha Konasana forward extension variation BKS IyengarPut the elbows on your thighs, pressing down. Exhale, extend forward and rest the head, then the nose and lastly the chin on the floor. (Or on bolster/brick if needed). Hold this position for 30-60 seconds with normal breathing.
  11. To come up: Inhale, raise the trunk and go back to position 5.
  12. Release the feet, straighten the legs, back to Dandasana (Staff pose).
  13. Observe the widening of the legs and the lifting of the trunk.

References:

BKS Iyengar: ‘Light on Yoga’ and ‘Yoga the path to holistic health’
Geeta S. Iyengar: ‘Yoga in Action, Preliminary course’