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Half Bound Lotus Intense Stretch


  • Stand erect; as you inhale bring the right leg up to half lotus position trying to place the heel in the abdomen beside the navel. If this is difficult you may hold the leg with both hands, right hand supporting right knee, left hand supporting right ankle, remaining in this position for the remainder of the pose.
  • If half lotus is attainable, circle the right arm around your back and grasp the right big toe. Keep the right knee lifted until you are able to “bind” or catch the toe with your right hand. Place your left hand on your waist. If you are unable to catch the toe, then catch your left arm as your left hand holds your right foot (remain here for the remainder of the pose).
  • If bound hand to foot, Exhale fold forward at your hip crease, press your left hand to the floor beside your left foot, straighten the knee and touch your knee with your nose. Breathe deeply, hold for 5 breaths. Allow some of your body weight to shift into the left hand, for this has become your other foot!
  • Inhale look up, exhale pause and bend left knee, inhale come up catching waist with left hand, exhale to Samasthiti. Repeat other side.

Binding has a “squeezing and soaking” effect on the limbs that are bound. While bound, blood is squeezed out from the tissues in the bound limbs and the organs that are being pressed on by the limbs, when the pose is released fresh blood rushes in bringing with it nutrients and oxygen. This control over circulation seems to create a very strong presence for cleansing and healing in the body.

This asana also focuses on cleansing the liver and spleen, respectively (right to left sides of the posture). The heel presses into the navel center helping to cleanse and tone the digestive organs by stimulating the digestive fire (Agni). Trapped intestinal gas is eliminated along with gastric troubles.

**Note of caution: KNEES . . . this position is the first of the lotus positions, sensitive knees need to move very slowly with lotus. Lotus positions require a twist at the knee joint, If hips are tight, the lotus position requires more twist on the knee to accommodate the tight hip, be patient! Slowly the body will change. Do not add forward bending until you are bound hand to foot. Some knees are OK, with forward bending without binding, and many are not. Err on the side of caution.

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