Baddhakoṇāsana: baddha=bound, kona= angle
How to Get Into It
- Start sitting on the mat. Ensure your pelvis is grounded and sitting bones have good contact with the rug. You may want to pull your glutеal muscles out and sit firmly on the sitting bones.
- Hold your back straight without rounding it. If that’s too difficult at first or you feel your back muscles sore as you sit – use a folded blanket. Put the blanket under the edges of your sitting bones and tailbone.
- Keep the spine straight—lower back in the neutral position. Pull your shoulder blades away from your ears and relax the neck, face, and upper back.
- As you exhale, bend both legs and pull your feet closer to your pelvis. Press soles to each other. Make sure your soles, heels, and toes are touching each other slightly.
- If you can reach your soles – grab them with your hands and pull as closer as you can to the pelvis while still feeling a comfortable stretch. Then, let your knees drop down to the sides.
- Stay in this position for 1-5 minutes, breathing deeply and relaxing your thighs and legs. Remember to keep the straight back!
- Nice stretch for hips, groin, knees, and muscles of inner thighs.
- The pose improves blood circulation in pelvic organs. This, in turn, helps ease menstrual pain, lower back pain, and sciatica.
- Releases tension in genitals and is good to deal with sexual issues.
- Recommended for pregnant women as a part of the preparation for giving birth
- The butterfly pose is known as the calming pose that relieves stress and emotional tension. It can be practiced before bedtime.
Don’t do this pose if you have a knee injury or surgery.
In some cases, the pose can be practiced under the supervision of a professional yoga instructor as a part of your rehab.
Beginner: For those with tight hips, use a bolster, folded blanket, meditation pillow, or a block to sit. In this way, you lift your pelvis and get more release in the hips.
Alternatively, you can use two blocks to put under each knee. With this, your hips and legs’ muscles can relax more while being placed on a support.
Advanced: To go deeper, pull your feet closer to the pelvis. If that’s accessible already, add forward fold. Vary the intensity of the fold depending on your body limitations. Ensure you lengthen the spine and avoid rounding back while you fold forward.
Grab your big toes with index finger and thumb, bend your elbows and rest them on your thighs. Aim at placing the torso between your knees as you fold. With time, when you can fold all the way forward, you can put your forehead on the floor and relax.
Rounded back is one of the common misalignments in the Butterfly pose. So don’t skip using props to make your back straight. At the same time, you need to work on building strength in core and back muscles to hold the spine in a proper position with time.
Don’t force your knees to reach the floor. Better take deep and smooth breaths and allow your muscles to relax. Let gravity do the hard work!