Big Toe Yoga Pose
overview

Big Toe Yoga Pose is a standing, forward bend pose that stretches the hamstrings and calves and is ideal for yogis and yoginis at an intermediate level.

muladhara – the root chakra
related poses
How To Do Big Toe Yoga Pose
  1. Begin by standing upright with your feet hip-width apart (no less than 6 inches), your legs straight and your arms loose at your side.
  2. Contract your thigh muscles — this will cause your kneecaps to lift up. Bend forward at the hip joints until you are able to grasp your big toes. Your legs and back should remain straight as you bend.
  3. Grasp the big toe of each foot with your thumb and first two fingers. Your fingers should slide between your big toes and your second toes until your fingers are wrapped around and under your big toes. Press your toes into your fingers.
  4. Still holding on to your toes, inhale and lift your torso as if you were standing up until your elbows are straightened.
  5. Exhale, bend your elbows and bend your torso forward again. Inhale and repeat step 4.
    Repeat step 5 several times, coming to a total of 60 seconds. Release your toes and return to a standing position.
Notes
  • Breathe deeply through each step.
  • If you have a history of neck or lower back injuries, consult an instructor or doctor before attempting this pose.
Tips
If you cannot reach your toes, loop yoga straps under the arches of your feet.
Stretches & Strengthens

All Muscles: Hamstrings, calves, spine, arms
Target Muscles: Hamstrings, calves

Health Benefits of Big Toe Yoga Pose
  • May relieve stress, anxiety and fatigue.
  • Improves flexibility in the hips.
  • May improve digestion.
  • May relieve headaches, insomnia and menopause symptoms.

Sanskrit Name & Meaning

Sanskrit Name & Meaning

Padangusthasana

(pod-ang-goosh-tAHS-anna)

pada: foot
angusta: big toe
asana: posture

History & Mythology

History & Mythology

It’s a little known fact that the big toe is one of the most important parts of the body. It is essential for balance and bears a great deal of the weight of the body. Toe rings play a big part in Indian culture. Hindu women traditionally wear matching toe rings on each feet, called bichiyas, to symbolize their marital state. In the Hindu epic Ramayana, Sita, wife of the Ram, loses her toe rings when she is kidnapped. Her brother Lakshmana gives them to Ram to comfort him in his grief. Also, in some versions of the Ramayana the evil Ravana is slain when Ram finds and cuts off his secret real head hidden in his big toe.
We are constantly researching to find more information about the history and mythology behind each pose. If you have any further information, we’d love to hear from you.