Reclining Big Toe Yoga Pose

Reclining Big Toe Yoga Pose is a supine, reclined pose that targets the hamstrings and is ideal for yogis and yoginis at all levels.

muladhara – the root chakra
related poses
How To Do Reclining Big Toe Yoga Pose
  1. Start out in the Corpse Pose (Savasana). Strongly extend through your legs, exhaling as you bend and draw your right knee up towards your chest. Wrap your hands around your shin and pull your knee in a bit deeper. Hold this position for a few breaths.
  2. Take your yoga strap (or scarf if you don’t have one available), folding it around the arch of your right foot. Inhale, fully extending your right leg while actively pushing your left leg into the mat. Walk your hands up to hold the strap as close to your feet as possible, elbows fully extended. Keep your shoulders broad and firmly grounded on the mat.
    Extend your leg fully through your heel, pushing your heel away from your body. Start by holding your leg perpendicular to the floor. Lower your right hip down slightly, bringing your foot closer to your head, still pushing out through the heel.
  3. To keep your left leg active, lift it one or two inches off of the ground and hold this position for a few deep breaths before lowering again.
  4. Hold this stretch for 1-3 minutes. If you like, deepen it further by transferring the strap to your right hand only. Take your left hand and press it onto your left hip, rooting it to the ground. Turn your right leg at the hip, toes and knees pointing right, and exhale as you swing your leg out to the right. Legs should be kept straight, but it’s okay to bend at the elbow to pull your leg deeper into the position. Hold your leg a few inches from the floor if possible, making sure to keep your opposite hip firm against the floor. Hold this position for a few deep breaths, or for 1-3 minutes.
  5. Bring your leg back to the vertical position, keeping both legs straight and your hip still grounded. Try not to use the strap to assist you; concentrate on lifting the leg its own strength. Hold this position for a few deep breaths, then release the strap and bring your knee back to your chest as you exhale. Release your leg with another exhale before repeating with the left leg.
  • Breathe deeply through each step.
  • Keep your grounded leg active throughout the stretch.
  • Do not perform if you are suffering from diarrhea or headaches.
  • If you have high blood pressure (hypertension), use a folded blanket or towel for support under your head and neck.

If swinging the leg to the side, it can be helpful to place a block along the outside of that leg’s hip. Resting the leg on the block won’t interfere with the stretch in your hamstrings, but will help you relax your groin and deepen the stretch further.
For another twist, try crossing your leg over your torso as an addition. Hold the strap with the opposite hand when doing this.

Stretches & Strengthens

All Muscles: Hamstrings, calves, quads, lower back, groin

Target Muscles: Hamstrings

Health Benefits of Reclining Big Toe Yoga Pose
  • Aids digestion.
  • Can relieve back pain and menstrual pain.
  • Can relieve symptoms of sciatica and high blood pressure (hypertension).

Sanskrit Name & Meaning

Sanskrit Name & Meaning

Supta Padangusthasana

(soop-TAH pod-ang-goosh-tAHS-anna)

supta: asleep, resting, inactive
pada: foot
angusta: big toe
asana: posture

History & Mythology

History & Mythology

There’s gotta be some history or mythology on this pose! We’ve looked high and low and have only come up with this message. Perhaps you have some information or resource for us to explore?