Hero's Pose - Virasana (3-5 Eggs)
"Sometimes, legs may ache, and the mind might say, 'Skip yoga!' But an intelligent mind has to find out why they are paining and work out how to remove that pain. One finds a means to escape, but to persist and pursue needs a strong mind. Practice is like using a pin to remove a splinter in the hand. In the same way, one has to learn to use the intelligence to practice to remove the so-called pains and reform the practices so that these pricks do not occur at all."---B.K.S. Iyengar, Yoga Wisdom & Practice
- Under the sitting-bones
- Under or between the hands
- For people with discomfort in the knees, or difficulty finding lift in the spine, using an Egg under the hands can both relieve some of the tension in the knees and encourage a sense of lightness from lifting out of the lower back.
- If there is strain in the knees due to flexion, sitting on Eggs creates space behind the knee joint, alleviating discomfort.
- Pressure or discomfort on the tops of the feet can be an issue for many people. This is often due to tightness in the quadriceps or insufficient mobility in the foot. Sitting up on Eggs adds space between the sitting-bones and the floor, thus alleviating some, if not all, of this pressure.
- Placing an Egg between the hands encourages broadening across the collar bones and protects the wrists.
- Come to hands and knees and place 2 Eggs flat or round side up between your calves. If you need more height you can stack the Eggs, Lego Style, under your sitting-bones.
- Keeping your knees hip-distance apart, sit back on the Eggs.
- Bring the ankles as close to the hips as possible, tops of the feet pressing into the floor, to help reduce torque in the knee.
- Press your sitting-bones into the Eggs to encourage the heads of your femurs to descend towards the ground.
- Gently rotate your thighs inward.
- Inhale, and lift up out of your lower back as you lengthen your front body.
- Encourage your lower back ribs to move away from your pelvis as you extend through all four sides of your torso.
- Pressing your hands into the Egg, allow your shoulder blades to be drawn down the back as you broaden across the collarbones.
- Keep the lower front ribs soft.
- Bringing your gaze forward, draw your chin slightly in toward the spine and up, lengthening the cervical spine.
When Not To
- If knee pain persists in spite of the elevated sitting position, consult a physician before continuing kneeling poses.
- If you are suffering from an ankle injury, avoid this pose.
- If you experience mild pain in the top of your foot, place a rolled up hand towel between the top of your foot or front of your ankle and the floor.
- If you are sitting on a tall stack of Eggs, and still feel pressure in your knees, try placing an Egg in each hand and grounding into the Eggs on either side of your hips. Lift out of your lower back.