Happy Monday, everyone! It’s the first day of winter quarter here at UC Davis, which means I only have 2 more quarters of college! Pretty crazy. In honor of a new year and a new school term, I thought this simple but awesome pose would be a good one to talk about.
Yoga isn’t about being able to do the craziest, most challenging poses. It’s about the practice; being mindful, taking care of your body, and taking time out of your busy day to do something ancient and bigger than yourself. This is a good pose to use to remember all that because it’s a simple seated posture that allows for relaxation and is a great hip-opener.
We call this Firelog pose because you stack your shins like a pile of wood, but it’s Sanskrit name is Agnistambhasana.
To start, warm up with some Sun Salutation or other exercise. Then sit comfortably, maybe on a blanket, and flex both feet. Then stack your right shin on top of your left. You can place the foot on top of the opposite knee, as in the picture above, or have it in closer to your hip, whatever feels okay to you. Roll your shoulders back and down, and sit up tall.
If you want more of a stretch, hinge forward at your hips, stopping near the bottom of your range to lift your heart forward before letting your head hang loose.
Sit here, at whatever place feels good (but gives you a stretch too), for at least 10 breaths. Focus on your breathing, and let your mind be cleared of thoughts. If you feel emotional, that’s okay! A lot of yogis believe that excess emotion is stored in the hips, and that when we stretch and open them, we release it.
This is a great pose to do in the middle of your day, when you need a little break, or before bed. For more information, check out Yoga Journal’s instructions.