One leg chair pose will work out all of your leg muscles and abdominals for a strong and balanced core. Also, like any balance pose, it focuses the mind and increases clarity.
- Begin by coming into Awkward Chair Pose (Utkatasana). Take several breaths here with both feet grounded into the floor. Make sure your thighs are low and your weight is back in your heels.
- Bring your hands to Anjali Mudra near your heart. Feel all 4 corners of your left foot on the floor as you start to peel your right foot off the ground. Keep your left knee bent as you cross your right ankle over to rest on your left thigh just above your knee.
- Flex your right foot strongly. If you look down, you should see a triangle shape formed by your legs.
- Stay in this position for 3 to 5 breaths. For balance postures, it’s useful to find a place to look on the floor just in front of you.
- If you want to go further, begin to bring your chest lower until your hands (still in prayer position) rest on your right calf. If this feels OK, you can continue to forward bend until your fingers touch the floor. Keep the bend in your right leg or straighten it, depending on which feels better.
- If you have bent forward, come out the way you came in, returning to an upright position slowly.
- Release the right leg to the floor and take a few breaths in Chair pose before doing the pose on the other leg.
- One-Legged Chair Pose improves core strength and balance
- Opens the hips, and strengthens the legs.
- You are stretching your outer hips and gluteus muscles while using the hamstrings, quadriceps, and gluteus maximus.
- You will need good focus to maintain this pose, which can help clear your mind.
- In everyday life, it is good to have well-toned legs and a better sense of balance to prevent falls.
- Opening your hips can also relieve the tightness that develops from sitting too much.
If you have low blood pressure or balance challenges, be sure to practice this pose against a wall. You should avoid this pose if you have a knee or ankle injury.
Pro Tip: If you have difficulty maintaining the balance, practice this against a wall. You can either face the wall and place your hands on the wall to maintain balance, or you can face away from the wall and use it to support your back.