Monkey Yoga Pose
overview

Monkey Yoga Pose is a seated pose that targets the hamstrings and is ideal for yogis and yoginis at an advanced level.

svadisthana – the sacral chakra
related poses
How To Do Monkey Yoga Pose
  1. Begin by kneeling upright with your thighs perpendicular to the ground and your knees slightly apart.
  2. Move your right foot about a foot forward. Shift your right foot so the sole lifts off the ground and only the outer heel still touches the floor. Roll your right thigh outward as you shift your foot.
  3. Exhale deeply and fold your torso forward, bracing yourself with fingertips on the ground.
  4. Carefully, start to slide your left knee backwards. Straighten out your left knee while simultaneously lowering your right leg closer to the ground.
  5. Start to move your right heel forward, away from your body. Continue moving your left leg back as you straighten your right one.
  6. Eventually, slowly drop both thighs so that they touch the ground. The right kneecap should be facing up towards the sky and the left leg should be straight behind you, not angled to any one sided.
  7. Extend your hands upward towards the sky or bring them together in front of you.
  8. Hold for 30 seconds to a minute. To come out, press both palms into the floor in front of you, turning the front leg outward. Draw the front right heel in toward your groin while moving the back left knee forward, until returning to the kneeling position. Repeat steps on other side.
Notes
  • Breathe deeply through each step.
  • This pose is very advanced and should not be attempted without an expert present.
  • If you have a history of groin or hamstring injuries, consult an instructor or doctor before attempting this pose.
  • Do not rush through this pose, which can cause injury or muscle strain. Take your time and work your way up to the full pose; it’s not necessary to master the splits immediately!
Tips
Warm up your legs before trying this pose.
Make sure your hips are facing forward and do not twist to any one side.
Perform this pose on a smooth surface that your skin won’t stick to — too much friction will only make this pose that much harder to attempt.
If you need extra support on your ankles or knees, put a folded towel or blanket underneath them.
Stretches & Strengthens

All Muscles: Groins, hamstrings, quads, shoulders, lats
Target Muscles: Hamstrings, quads

Health Benefits of Monkey Yoga Pose
  • Increases flexibility in the hips and legs.
  • Helps prevent running related injuries.
  • Tones abdominal muscles.
  • Stimulates inner organs.
  • Improves blood circulation, particularly in the abdomen.
  • May relieve symptoms of insomnia, sciatica and stress.

Sanskrit Name & Meaning

Sanskrit Name & Meaning

Hanumanasana

(hah-noo-mahn-AHs-anna)

Hanuman: the Hindu deity Hanuman
asana: posture

History & Mythology

History & Mythology

The Hanumanasana or Monkey Pose is one of three asanas attributed to Hanuman, a Hindu deity. Hanuman was a Vanara (noble monkey-like human with supernatural powers) and a loyal friend and follower of the popular and powerful god Rama. Hanuman is one of the rare examples of a hero that is equally clever, strong and virtuous. The other asanas attributed to Hanuman are the Virasana (Hero Pose) and Anjaneyasana (Low Lunge).
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.