Triangle Pose: Lift to Prevent Injury

Triangle pose, also known as Utthita Trikonasana or Trikonasana, can be a fabulous hip opener. However, it is important to exercise caution and pay attention to form in this exercise in particular. As someone who has injured a very deep hip muscle from not paying attention, trust me. Guard your form.

The key to getting all the benefit and no injury from this pose is actively resist gravity and lift your hips away from the ground. We begin in a really wide leg stance so it’s tempting to let gravity sink us. However, that’s when injury occurs.

Instead, create a feeling like you’re trying to pull your adductors (inner thighs) toward each other. This scissoring feeling will help you stay lifted and prevent injury. It is very important to maintain this scissoring throughout the pose.

Also, let me take a moment to advise that you check with your physician before beginning any new exercise activities. If something feels wrong or painful to you, stop what you’re doing immediately.

Triangle pose

  1. We will use ujjayi breathing.
  2. Begin in Warrior 2 (Virabhadrasana 2) with your left foot forward.
  3. Straighten your left knee.
  4. Remember to scissor your adductors.
  5. Kick your right hip out to the wall behind you as you reach your left arm forward to the wall in front of you. Feel your arms reach away from each other as your left hand moves toward the ground.
  6. Triangle poseAs you move, keep your chest open and don’t allow it to rotate forward. Allow your fingertips to touch down either on the floor or a block in front of or behind your calf. If this side stretch is too intense, you can press the back of your left hand into your leg. Make sure you do not rest here. Actively reach the ribs away from your leg.
  7. Check the alignment of your head and make sure it is correctly aligned with your spine. Sometimes the head can fall forward.
  8. Look forward or up at your right hand.
  9. Make sure both legs are straight.
  10. Press the outside edge of the right foot into the mat.
  11. Reach your arms apart.
  12. Hold for 5-8 breaths.
  13. To come out, let the right arm come by your side to help lift the torso to an upright position.
  14. Switch sides. Maybe you will do Triangle pose on the left side, then the right. Frequently, I do a combination of Warrior 2, Parsvakonasana, and Triangle pose. Then, I switch sides.

Triangle pose video

Here is a video for visual learners.

What part of your body feels like it has been worked the most? Let us know in the comments below.

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Sarah Stockett is STOTT certified in Matwork, Reformer, Cadillac, Chair, & Barrels, Injuries & Special Populations, and CORE; a Yoga Alliance RYT-200; and has studied Active Isolated Stretching. When she is not trying to discover the best exercises to get rid of pain, she likes watching movies and travelling with her family.

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