Rox Does Yoga

Yoga, Wellness, and Life

Pose of the Month: Cobbler Pose October 20, 2011

Filed under: Pose of the Month,yoga — R. H. Ward @ 1:34 pm
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Pose Name: Cobbler Pose or Bound Angle Pose

Sanskrit Name: Baddha Konasana

Steps:

  1. Begin by sitting up straight in a cross-legged position.
  2. Press the soles of the feet together and bring the heels close to the body.
  3. Sit up tall on your sitting bones and use your hands to pull any flesh away from the sitting bones.
  4. Make a basket with your hands and clasp them around your feet.
  5. Sit up nice and tall. If that’s as far as your hips can work today, that’s okay – just focus on sitting up nice and tall and opening up the hips.
  6. If your body allows, bend forward over the feet while keeping a flat back. Don’t hunch your back to get your head to your feet – your goal should be to bring the navel towards the feet.
  7. Engage the mula bandha, the muscles of the pelvic floor, to move deeper into the pose.
  8. As you inhale, lengthen the spine; as you exhale, bend a little deeper. Walk your hands forward on the ground if you wish.
  9. Relax and let gravity pull you forward. Take several slow, deep breaths.
  10. Come up slowly and return to a comfortable cross-legged position.

Benefits:

Cobbler pose opens the hips and promotes greater flexibility in the hips. It increases blood flow to the pelvis and opens the root chakra, which helps to energize and cleanse the sexual organs.

Contraindications:

Those with hip problems should work gently in this pose. Pregnant students should take care in any forward bend and modify as needed.

My Experience of Cobbler Pose:

This month, working on my presentation about yoga and sex, I learned a lot about cobbler pose, so I thought I’d feature it as a Pose of the Month. Practicing this pose can really pay off in the bedroom, since it opens the hips and really engages the pelvic floor muscles.

I’ve always liked this pose, and over the years I’ve made a lot of progress with how far I can bend forward. Still, some days I can’t get very far, so this pose always reminds me to work gently with wherever my body is today.

Cobbler Pose

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8 Responses to “Pose of the Month: Cobbler Pose”

  1. Tori Says:

    What advice would you give to someone who feels little to no muscular or fascia stretch in the hips and groins but comes across limiting compression in the sides or backs of the hip sockets?

    • R. H. Ward Says:

      I’d have to say that I haven’t come across that particular problem before. I might say that just sitting up straight in the pose might be enough to stretch the sides/backs of the hips. You might consider sitting on a pillow or blanket in case elevating the hips would help. It might also help to move the feet out further in front of the body: this might release some of that side/back tension and allow for stretching in the groin. Moving the feet further out doesn’t compromise the pose, you’d still get a good, though slightly different, stretch, and if it would lessen that tension it’d be worth it. Let me know if any of this works!

      • Tori Says:

        Thanks, I’ve tried all of those. The issue isn’t that there’s muscular or fascial tension in the sides or back of my hips; it’s that there’s compression from the femur head rotating and hitting the back of my hip socket. With the external rotation, I hit bone on bone in the joint before my inner thighs feel any opening.

        My way around it when there’s room has been to substitute a wide-legged forward fold, but in crowded classes, it’s not practical. Hrm, maybe what I should really be looking for is another seated groin stretch that takes up less space! 🙂

  2. […] Cobbler/Bound Angle Pose (Baddha Konasana): A nice hip opener. Feel free to just sit up tall here if bending forward doesn’t work for you anymore. You can also try extending your legs out into a diamond shape rather than pulling the heels close to your body. If you experience tailbone pressure in this pose (like I do!) be really gentle with how you sit and don’t push yourself too far – it’ll make your tailbone feel worse, and you can still get the hip opening benefits just from sitting up tall. While you’re here, try some neck rolls or arm stretches – for example, some Eagle arms can open the shoulders and back. Might as well work out a few things at once! […]


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