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Aren’t we all looking for ways to achieve a shapely physique? Well, if that’s you, then make sure you make yoga an integral part of your life. Because there are certain poses that can really work their magic! There are several problem areas where fat resides in our bodies; one of them being the hips. If you want to open up your hips, don’t look further than the side lunge or skandasana. This pose doesn’t just build your core strength, but also stretches your hips and hamstrings.
There are several benefits of this pose. For one, it enhances your balance and core strength. It stretches the hamstrings and hips, which often get stiff from leading a sedentary lifestyle. In certain situations, the stiffness could also arise from sports such as running. Stretching the hip flexors also helps to relieve back pain and prevents sciatica.
Here’s what you need to do:
1. Start in a wide-legged forward bend position (prasarita padottanasana).
2. Bend your left knee into a half-squat. Keep your right leg straight and flex your foot, so that your toes root into the right heel.
3. Press hips back, while making sure that your spine is lifted. Root into your feet so that your body is lifted.
4. Keep your hands on the floor if you need them for balance (on a block if that is helpful). Otherwise, try bending your elbows and bringing your hands into anjali mudra (palms together) with the left elbow inside the left knee.
5. Drop your hands to the floor for support and shift to the other side.
Twisting of the knees happens quite often, so make sure to avoid it. Try and hinge forward at the hip joints, and align them with the ankles, instead of twisting. Make sure your abs are engaged and your spine is straight.
Keep your abs engaged and spine straight.