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Sensational Yoga poses Article Archive

Articles grouped by category

This archive is an index of sorts. It includes all files on this website grouped according to the categories in the table of contents, below. For more on how pages are categorized and indexed (aka the "schema"), check out the more section below the TOC.

A slightly newer index is the categories index which lists categories alphabetically. In the categories index, links to files, and relevant sections within particular files are listed under each category.

More on the indexing schema

The categories are designed to group articles in such a way that they supplement each other. So rather than doing a category on stretching and one on anatomy and one on pain, these are all tied together by body part.

So if you want hip stretches, but you also want to learn the anatomy of the hips, you can find articles on those grouped under the hip section.

But where's the hip section?

Because there can be some (or alot) of overlap when dealing with anatomic structures, and when stretching parts of the body and exercising them, the hips and knees are grouped together in a category following the anatomic grouping. Likewise, the pelvis, spine and ribcage.

While not ideal at first glance, hopefully, this does make it easier for you to find related articles and from those build a better understanding of your body.

As for poses that don't focus on a particular body part, these are mostly under the poses section.

The category, tuned tension, includes sub categories on muscle control and proprioception and, as much as I'm starting to dislike the word, "tensegrity". Muscle control and proprioception are two sides of the same coin. You can't have one without the other. The idea of tuned tension (and tensegrity) is to use your body in such a way that it is is easy to feel and control. And that's pretty much what this website is about. When it isn't about that, it's about ideas (or "principles") that can applied to all aspects of life. Yoga poses, particularly sensational yoga poses, are one context for learning and practicing these principles.

Ab Strength And Control

Core Stability Exercises

Core stability exercises aren't just for developing strong abs. If you want your abs to look good and work well then work on developing control of your abdominal muscles with these simple tips.

Straight Leg Situps

Straight leg situps are a simple (and safe) way of exercising the abs. Learn how to work towards the straight leg situp with awareness and control and while keeping your lower back safe.

Walking With A Twist

Train your abs, relieve low back pain, help your heart pump blood by walking with a twist. This method of walking develops core awareness and control and exercises your abs.

Yoga Poses For Abs

These yoga poses for abs work on the abdominal muscles (and hips) in both standing positions and seated positions.

Anatomy Basics

Joint Pain Yoga

Rather than fighting through joint pain here is an overview of the approach that I've used to help alleviate hip pain, knee pain or shoulder joint pain while doing yoga poses.

Yoga For Pain

If you experience pain while doing yoga either change what you are doing or change the way that you do it.

Alternatives To The Anatomical Position

What if we had altenatives to the anatomical position that took into account the effects of gravity. Could anatomy then be more user friendly, not just for doctors and surgeons but for people who use their bodies.

Anatomy Trains (Myofascial Meridians)

Want to lift more weight or make stretching easier? Anatomy trains show how muscles are connected via trains of connective tissue. These myofascial meridians allow you to create stability with minimal effort so you can control your muscles.

Learn Anatomy For Yoga By Drawing It

One of the best ways to learn anatomy for yoga is to draw it. And if you learn to draw anatomy from memory then you have a built in map for learning to sense your anatomy and control it.

Arm Strengthening

Arm Strengthening Exercises

These yoga poses can be used as arm strengthening exercises.

Yoga Push Ups

Yoga push ups can be used to develop body awareness and arm strength and help make chaturanga dandasana easier. They can also leave you feeling nicely energized.


An Introduction To Ashtanga Style Sun Salutations

In this overview of the asthanga yoga style sun salutations, learn about common mistakes and how to avoid them. Also use counting as an easy way learn the movements

Ashtanga Yoga Sun Salutation A

Having trouble remembering sun salutation a? To learn it, break it down into a series of mini-sun salutes and learn it in easy to remember sections.

Learning Ashtanga Style Sun Salutation B

The Ashtanga Yoga sun salutation B builds up on elements learned in sun salutation A. Break it down to make learning this sequence of yoga poses easier.

Learning The Steps Of Surya Namaskar A

Here's a break down of the steps of Ashtanga Yoga Surya Namaskar A to make this sun salutation easier to learn and remember.

Ashtanga Yoga

Ashtanga yoga is a sequence of yoga poses. The primary series uses sun salutations to warmup followed by standing poses and seated poses and ending with a finishing sequence.

Ashtanga Yoga Poses,

An overview of the sequence of ashtanga yoga poses with links to more detailed descriptions.

Ashtanga Yoga Poses

If you are new to yoga and aren't sure where how to sequence poses, the standing series of ashtanga yoga poses offers one possible model. I've included vinyassas, the steps for moving in and out of each pose, at the bottom of the page.

Ashtanga Yoga Poses, Part 2

The second part of the Ashtanga Yoga Poses Standing Series, from reverse prayer to warrior 2.

Ashtanga Yoga Poses, Seated Poses Part 1

Seated ashtanga yoga poses part 1, from dandasana to navasana.

Ashtanga Standing Pose Vinyassas

Here are the Ashtanga Standing Pose Vinyassas, with inhale movements highlighted in red.

Shoulder Awareness Exercises For Ashtanga Jump Backs

Simple shoulder awareness exercises for landing lightly doing Ashtanga jump backs. Learn how to keep your shoulders ahead of your wrists when moving back into plank or chaturanga dandasana.


Balance Basics (Improve Balance Via Proprioception And Control)

Feeling Your Center Of Gravity

Your center of gravity can shift relative to your body. Feeling your center of gravity allows you to stay balanced despite these shifts.

Feeling Your Center Of Gravity

Your center of gravity can shift relative to your body. Feeling your center of gravity allows you to stay balanced despite these shifts.

Improve Balance With Yoga

To improve balance with yoga it helps if you understand some basic principles for balance so that you can improve balance more efficiently.

Learning How To Balance

Learning how to balance in a way that is not activity specific, it helps to have some simple exercises and an underststanding of what balance is.

Yoga Balance Poses

Learn how to shift your center relative to your foundation to find your balance in yoga balance poses.

Select Poses For Learning Balance

Balancing Cat Pose

In balancing cat pose you lift the same side leg and arm. This same posture is used as a test in Gray Cooks Functional Movement Screen

Balancing In Half Moon Pose

Balancing in Half Moon yoga pose can be made easier. Some simple tricks to make balance and stability easier.

Bird Dog

12 ways to do bird dog, while improving body awareness and control at the same time.

Tree Pose

Balance on one foot while expanding upwards and outwards in tree pose. You can do a twist and side bend at the same time.

Yoga Crow Pose Arm Balance (Bakasana)

Some simple exercises to help you prepare for and balance in yoga crow pose arm balance and some suggestions for advanced movements like jumping from bakasana into chaturanga dandasana.

Sets Of Yoga Poses For Practicing And Improving Balance

11 Basic Balance Poses

11 Basic balance poses including balancing on forefoot or heel as well as balancing on one foot. The challenge in these poses is keeping your ribcage and pelvis still.

Balancing On One Foot

Balancing on one foot yoga poses include both both bound (eagle pose, tree pose) and unbound poses. Balance can be easier to learn using unbound poses to begin with.

Yoga Poses To Improve Balance

These standing, sitting and kneeling yoga poses can be used to improve balance.


Mula Bandha Anatomy

Want a clear cut definition of mula bandha and an easy way to activate it? Read how to activate and use your pubococcygeus to lock your sacrum to your pelvis giving your spine a stable foundation. Learn how to wag your tailbone.

The Three Yoga Bandhas (Mula, Uddiyana And Jalandhara)

The three yoga bandhas can affect the si joint, hip stability, spine, psoas, breath and posture.

Uddiyana Bandha

One version of uddiyana bandha can be used to stretch your diaphragm and exercise your intercostals.

Basic Principles For Yoga Poses

Adding Bigness To Your Yoga Poses

An experienced yogi's yoga pose has a sense of bigness. How do you as a beginner add bigness to your yoga poses?

Create Stability In Yoga Poses

Make your yoga poses less wobbly with less effort. Grounding and centering are two techniques for creating stability in yoga poses.

Grounding Your Yoga Pose

Inspired by Thomas Myers Anatomy Trains, sequenced muscle activation provides a framework for grounding your yoga pose. The result can be more control with less effort.

Making Your Yoga Poses Sensational

An experienced yogi's yoga pose has a sense of bigness. How do you as a beginner add bigness to your yoga poses?

Yoga Pose Brush Strokes

Yoga pose brush strokes are an allusion to chinese characters that can be broken down into brush strokes to make learning them easier. Whether learning the details of a yoga pose or a sequence of yoga poses, make learning easier by breaking complex entities down into clearly defined brush strokes or elements.

Basics And Principles

Basic Principles

Basic principles for doing yoga poses based on five element theory: foundation, connection, center, room to move, expression (earth, water, metal, fire, wood)

Be Like Water

Water fills the cup that it flows into. Likewise the teapot. But why does it do that? If we know why water flows, we can be like water and get into the flow.

Being Present

Why being present is the oppositve of thinking and how to utilize both modes effecively.

Centering And Self Expression

Grounding and centering can often be thought of as leading to the same state of being. Here I'd like to focus on the idea of centering. But I will talk a little about possible symptoms of a lack of groundedness or a lack of centeredness as well as some symptoms of overdoing either of these two tendencies.

Concepts Of Tai Chi

One of the concepts of taj chi is finding balance. More than just staying upright this can mean the balance between lengthening and relaxing, and between stability and relaxing.

First Principles

If you learn to feel and control your body using a first principles approach, you can apply that sensitivity and control to better using your body in anything that you do.

Five Element Theory

Building a yoga pose using daoist five element theory: earth, water, metal, wood, fire along with twin concepts substantial and insubstantial.

How Do Define Mastery?

How do you define mastery? If you understand what mastery is you may find it easier to work towards it.

How We Learn

I like to think of learning as building a model inside of ourselves. The better the model the better we can act effectively with minimal thinking effort.

Learning Your Body, Enjoying (The) Experience

Sensational yoga poses are designed to help make learning your body a more enjoyable experience.

Managing Change

Learn to be present. Develop body awareness and control so that you can handle change, create it and manage it.

Optimal Performance In Yoga

One way to reach optimal performance is to clearly define problems and to focus on clearly defined actions and parts of the body.

Self Mastery

One of the ideas of self mastery is that the easiest thing to change is ourselves. This can start by becoming aware of our habits and the way that we think so that we can begin to change them.

Self Smart

By training ourselves to be self smart we can learn to do things without thinking. We can maximize the consciousness we spend on using our senses and responding to the present.

Thin Slicing

Thin slicing is what Malcolm Gladwell calls thinking without thinking. But the same intelligence that is behind "blinking" can also create actions that are intelligent but also done without thinking.

What Is Yoga

What is yoga? If you are doing yoga poses it can help to understand what yoga is. It also helps to understand what it's compliment is.'


Beginners Yoga Routine

This Beginners Yoga Routine is from the ebook Yoga Basics 2, Muscle Control and Stability Exercises for More Flexible Hamstrings. It's designed to introduce a sequence of basic yoga poses.

Beginners Yoga Workout

This beginners yoga workout is designed to get you familiar with your body as well as some basic yoga movements. It includes poses that strengthen the arms, legs and core, and simple exercises that develop awareness, coordination and balance.

Beginning A Yoga Practice

I want to begin a yoga practice but there's so much information on this website I don't know where to start. Here a suggestion for how to begin a mindful yoga practice

Getting Started With Yoga Poses

Getting started with with a first principles approach to yoga poses so that you can better understand your body as well as better experience it.

Preventing Injury When Starting Yoga

What are some common ways of getting injured in a yoga class? What can you do to help prevent injury when starting yoga?

Stretching For Beginners

Stretching for beginners, a series of stretches for beginners for improving flexibility with basic actions, modifications and recovery poses.

Why Do Yoga?

Why do Yoga? There is a way of doing yoga that can help your improve: flexibility, peace of mind, joint health and body awareness.

Yoga Basics For Beginners

Some yoga poses basics for beginnersincluding: why do yoga, learning your body, doing poses safely, creating your own routines, warming up, keeping your joints safe and more.

Yoga Exercises To Improve Stability

Some simple yoga exercises to improve stability, strength and control in the shoulders, waist and hips.

Yoga For Beginners 1

One approach to learning yoga is to simply practice yoga poses. The approach in Yoga For Beginners 1 is to help you to learn to feel your body while doing yoga poses.

Yoga For Beginners 2

Building up on the material for part 1, Yoga for Beginners 2 teaches you how to make your body stable for a slightly different experience of your hips and shoulders.

Breathing Anatomy And Breath Control

Breathing Anatomy For Yoga Teachers

Breathing anatomy for yoga teachers. Learn various breathing methods and how respiratory muscles help you feel as well as control your breath.

Breathing Basics:

Regulate air flow using your lips, tongue or throat. Mouth breathing and nose breathing basics.

Costal Breathing

Costal Breathing uses the intercostal muscles as well as the spinal erectors and other muscles to help expand the ribcage while inhaling. You can use it to help increase mobility of the thoracic spine and the ribcage.

Developing Core Control With Agni Sara

In these two versions of agni sara you can exercise your intercostals, stretch your diaphramg and fine tune your control of your transverse abdominals.

Easy Breathing Technique

Easy breathing is a breathing technique that helps you to mobilize your spine and ribcage as well as breathe more easily.

Sensational Breathing Exercises

While there are different ways to practice breath control one of the ways that I like to teach it and explore it is to focus on the muscles that actually drive the process of breathing. Hence these sensational breathing exercises.

Transverse Abdominis Training

The Transverse Abdominis is a little like the One Ring in Lord of the Rings. Learn how control of this muscle makes it easier to control your other muscles without making you invisible.

Ujjayi Breathing

Control your breath via your throat muscles with Ujjayi Breathing. By using your throat as a regulator you can create resistance for your breathing muscles to work against. Heat is one result

Consciousness And Flow

Becoming More Conscious

One of my primary interests is in becoming more conscious and in helping others to do the same.

Body Awareness Tips

Body awareness tips: Are isolation exercises a waste of time? If done intelligently they can actually be beneficial. The key is understanding how and when to use them and in understanding what to isolate.

Conscious Liberation

Working towards moksha, conscious liberation, is about internalizing limits, so that we can express ourselves within those limits in response to our inner environment or our outer environment or both. You could think of this as creative freedom. I first got a taste of this learning Andrey Lappa's universal yoga system.

Developing Full Body Awareness

To develop full body awareness you can isolate body parts and focus on the feet, the spine or the breath. It doesn't matter what part of the body you start of with so long as you start somewhere.

Getting Rid Of The Ego

Getting Rid of the Ego is a popular idea both in yoga and kung fu. But it's actually part of the mental machinery that we use for learning.

No Mind Or Knowing Mind

No mind could actually be thought of as knowing mind. It's a state where you aren't thinking because you know what you have to do.

Understanding Consciousness

Understanding consciousness means being able to think clearly and also to act. Problem solving and decision making can all be made simpler. You can enjoy life more.

Dealing With Fear

Dealing with fear in life, and when trying scary new yoga poses like headstand.

Overcoming Fear In Yoga Some Tips For

For me fear cropped up constantly when going around corners really quickly while riding a motorcycle or bicycle. It's also popped up when doing arm balancing poses like crow pose. Here's how I learned to deal with it.

Getting Into The Flow

Getting into the flow state is like you have mounted the wave of time and it carries you through space. As a result, time slows down or stops. How do you get into the flow state (and back out of it)?

Learning To Flow

You can liken flow to riding the river of time. To learn to flow it helps to pre-think. What is pre-thinking?

Dance Of Shiva Coordination Practice

Dance Of Shiva Movement Lessons

If you have trouble learning the Dance of Shiva, this set of instructions is designed to make it easier.

Dance Of Shiva Shoulder Exercises

Dance of shiva shoulder exercises strengthen the shoulders and wrists and improve flexibility, coordination and balance between left and right sides.

Learning The Basics Of The Dance Of Shiva

Learn the basic movements and positions of the dance of shiva. There are only 8 of each.

Practice Scapular Control With Dance Of Shiva

You can practice scapular control with the arm movements of the dance of shiva. Scapular stabilization and control can be important when trying to bind in yoga poses like Marichyasana A.

Practicing First Principles With The Dance Of Shiva

Can you actually practice first principles? Or can you train your mind so that doing things from first principles is easier, more natural. Enter [The dance of Shiva].

The Benefits Of The Dance Of Shiva

What are the benefits of the Dance of Shiva? Arm strength and balance, learning to learn and improving creativity.

The Dance Of Shiva

The dance of shiva is a complex movement practice with clearly defined movements and positions. Because of this, learning it is a good way of understanding how to learn in general.

The Dance Of Shiva

The dance of shiva can be used as a way to practice learning complex systems. If you are a self learner, dance of shiva can help you understand how to learn more efficiently.


Leg Strengthening Exercises

Turn yoga poses into leg strengthening exercises using floor pressing actions, leverage and friction.

Kettlebell Exercises

Apply yoga principles to doing kettlebell exercises. Learn how to feel your body and control it while doing get ups, swings and clean and presses.

The Turkish Get Up

Like learning a sun salutation you can learn the smaller movements of the turkish get up in isolation. And like when doing a yoga pose you can focus on being aware of your body as you learn the movements.

Flexibility (And Strength) Basics And Principles

A Quick Guide To Stretching

This is an overview to stretching effectively. Rather than giving instructions on specific stretches, it's an overview to all types of stretches and how to approach stretching in general.

Stretching For Flexibility

Yoga for flexibility with stretches for the hips, quads, hamstrings, glutes, psoas, shoulders and arms. These yoga stretches are designed to improve flexibility.

Stretching For Flexibility Tips

Flexibility tips, different strategies for stretching so that you can improve your flexibility. How to warm up, different techniques while stretching, pairing stretches and more.

Stretching Techniques

Personally I use several different stretching techniques to get more flexible. But I also use them to increase body awareness. In particular I use them to practice activating specific muscles and relaxing them.

Three Reasons Why You Should Improve Flexibility

Not everyone needs to get more flexible. Here are three reasons why you should improve flexibility. And there's absolutely no scientific reasoning behind it.

What Is Flexibility?

What is flexibility? One way to think about flexibility is that it is about being able to do the same thing in different ways (no matter what the circumstance). It's also about being able to do a wide variety of things with control. Read more.

Yoga Stretches For Improving Flexibility

Index of yoga stretches for increasing flexibility. Includes stretches for: hip flexors, quads, hamstrings, glutes, inner thighs, arms, shoulders.

Foot And Low Leg

Toe And Ankle Stretches

These toe and ankle stretches can be used as part of a simple warm up prior to doing kneeling yoga poses.

Foot Exercises

Foot exercises for Improving Balance, Proprioception and fixing flat feet. These foot exercises help you to shape your feet and activate inner arches, outer arches, heel and forefoot. (They may also help you deal with knee pain.)

Active Ankle Stretches For Achilles Tendon Pain

One way to deal with achilles tendon pain and tight ankles is to actively stretch your ankles. That means using your ankle muscles to stretch your ankles.

Shin Rotations

Shin rotations are one way to learn better awareness of your feet and heels so that you can stabilize them to help protect your knees.

Foot And Lower Leg Anatomy

The Foot

Foot, ankle and shin Anatomy and Biomechanics including Tibialis Posterior, Peroneus Longus, Peroneus Brevis and Tibialis Anterior.

Barefoot Running Heel Strike

Is it a bad idea to heel strike while barefoot running? What are the possible benefits of heel striking? When should you not heel strike?

Fallen Arches

If you've got fallen arches, you may not need arch supports for the rest of your life. These are foot exercises I used to fix my flat feet.

Peroneus Brevis

Peroneus Brevis can help to anchor the fibula to give the biceps femoris a stable foundation. It can also help stabilize the outer arch of the foot.

Peroneus Longus

Peroneus longus is one of a set of lower leg muscles that can help stabilize the heel laterally.

Sensational Calf Stretches

Calf stretches that also stretch the hamstrings. These stretches can be painful but effective.

Tibialis Anterior

Tibialis Anterior can be used with tibialis posterior to stabilize the shin. It can also help to anchor the Front portion of the IT Band.

Tibialis Posterior

Tibialis posterior can rotate the shin externally while standing or turn the sole of the foot up when not bearing weight.

Glutes (Stretch And Strengthen)

Pigeon Yoga Hip Stretch

In pigeon yoga hip stretch you can deepen the hip stretch by gradually moving your foot further forwards. Another way to deepen the yoga pose is to add weight.

Glute Stretch

This glute stretch is a variation of low lunge that you can use to stretch your glutes and outer hip muscles. It's also a preparation for armpit pose.

Iliotibial Band Stretch

Shoelace yoga pose is a do it yourself iliotibial band stretch that is mildly uncomfortable. If you are new to this stretch, you may need to do this pose on a low stool or yoga blocks to make the stretch more accesable

Pigeon Pose Glute Stretch

Pigeon Pose Glute Stretch is a variation of pigeon yoga pose that can be used to as a glute stretch. Instead of moving the leg relative to the pelvis, you move the pelvis relative to the leg to open up the side of the hip joint.

Sensational Glute Stretches

Piriformis, IT band and glute stretches. These yoga stretches work on the muscles at the back and side of the hip joint.

Hamstring Flexibility And Strength

A Seated Hamstring Stretch With The Leg Lifted

In this preparation for compass pose use your arms to pull your leg towards you for a seated hamstring stretch. To modify, use a strap.

Hamstring Stretches

The idea of these hamstring stretches is to help you improve hamstring strength and flexibility. They can also be used to help work towards front-to-back splits by teaching you how to use and control the front leg in that pose.

Hamstring Stretching Yoga Poses

Learn basic muscle control for standing and seated hamstring stretching yoga poses. Learn how to make these poses more effective for stretching your hamstrings.

How Do You Improve Hamstring Flexibility

How do you improve hamstring flexibility? Instead of just stretching your hamstrings, learn to feel and control your leg muscles. Calfs, quads, long hip muscles as well as the hamstrings and quads.

Simple Postures For Stretching Your Hamstrings

Are you having difficulty stretching your hamstrings? These simple postures can help.

Hamstring Strengthening Exercises

Turn forward bending and backbending yoga poses into glute and hamstring strengthening exercises for better awareness and control of the hamstrings and glutes.

Hip Anatomy

The Hip Crease

The hip crease, which is caused by the inguinal ligament, offers an easy to use proprioceptive reference for improving hip awareness and hip control.

Seated Straddles Splits

One way to deepen your side split while doing seated straddle splits is to focus on opening your hip creases. This could be thought of as an active adductor stretch.

Stretching Your Inner Thighs In Bound Angle By Opening Your Hip Creases

A simple way to deepen the adductor stretch in bound angle pose is to open the hip creases. This activates muscles of the hip for an active hip stretch. An important counter pose is to close the hip creases doing seated wide leg forward bend.

Creating And Maintaining Hip Joint Stability

There are a few ways to create hip joint stability. The techniques described here are all based first and foremost on being able to feel the muscles that work on your hip joint.

Hip Joint Anatomy

Hip joint anatomy, a look at muscle groupings that help to keep the hip joint centered.

Hip Joint Bicycle Wheel

Comparing the hip joint to a bicycle wheel. We could liken hip muscles to spokes. Their job is to keep the hip joint centered.

Hip Joint Questions And Answers

Hip joint questions answered. Get pinching in the groin in knee to chest type poses? Does your thigh come out of the hip socket? Here are some suggestions for dealing with these problems.

Hip Joint Stability And Control

The better you understand your hips joints the easier it is to stablize them and control them. It can also be easier to maintain hip joint health and deal with hip problems. Note that hip joint control necessarily includes proprioception of the hip joint. You have to be able to feel it in order to stabilize and/or control the hip joint.

Keeping Your Hip Joints Lubricated

Keeping your hip joints lubricated is key to keeping them healthy. How do you keep your hip joints lubricated?

Practicing Hip Rotation

Practice using and feeling your hip rotater muscles in a variety of poses. Rather than worrying about which one is right, learn to feel your body so that you can determine for yourself which is best on any given day.

Understanding Your Hip Joints

10 ways in which a bicycle wheel can help you to understand your hip joints.

Your Hip Joint Suspension System

Why your hip joint suspension system is important, and how to activate it at will

Obturator Externus

Obturator externus anatomy for yoga teachers. If you have hip pain in forward bends and your hip feels weak, obturator externus may be the culprit.

Obturator Internus

The obturator internus may help to change the shape of the pelvis, pulling the sitting bones away from sacrum and adding tension to the sacrotuberous ligament. This then gives fibers of the gluteus maximus a firm foundation from which to act.

Quadratus Femoris

Quadratus femoris could potentialy work in concert with the tensor fascia latae and thus not only help stabilize the hip joint, but also have an affect on the knee and ankle.

The Hip Flexors

The better you understand your hip flexors the easier it is to stretch them, strengthen them, remedy problems and otherwise use them.

The Single Joint Hip Flexors

Single joint single include iliacus, pectineus, obturators, gemelli and gluteus minimus.

Anterior Hip Pain

Dealing with anterior hip pain near the asic it helps to understand some basic muscle control principles along with tips on how to apply them.

Hip Flexor Pain While Walking

If you get hip flexor pain and knee pain while walking it may be because your hip flexors, (the sartorius, rectus femoris and tensor fascia latae), are insufficiently anchored. These hip flexors work on both the hip and knee joint.

Hip Joint Pain

Three simple techniques for alleviating hip joint pain while doing yoga poses.

Tips For Fixing Hip Pain In Standing Forward Bends

I get pain in my left hip in standing forward bends and even squats. Here are some of the exercises that I've used to make my hip feel better.

Adductor Magnus Long Head

The adductor magnus long head can be used to help stabilize the hip bone relative to the femur. This can then anchor the spinal erectors (iliocostalis and longissimus in particular) or the hip flexors (sartorius, rectus femoris, tensor fascia latae).

Adductor Magnus Long Head

Adductor magnus long head, sometimes compared to the hamstrings, can be used to internally rotate the thigh or to prevent rotation. It can also be used to extend the hip, swinging the thigh bone back relative to the pelvis.

Adductors And Inner Thigh Muscles

Expanding the adductors to include the sartorius and semitendinosus, you then have a group of hip muscles that can help to control hip flexion, extension, and rotation as well as adduction and abduction.

Hip And Knee Anatomy

It Band Anatomy And Bio-Mechanics

IT Band Anatomy and Biomechanics, how the It band, via the tensor fascia latae, superficial gluteus maximus and with the help of vastus lateralis can help to control the innominate bone or help to control knee rotation.

Gluteus Maximus Anatomy For Yoga Teachers

Gluteus maximus anatomy for yoga teachers. This muscle crosses the SI joint, hip joint and knee. It extends the hip and can be used to stretch the hip flexors in poses like upward facing dog.

The Gluteus Maximus And It'S Affect On The Si-Joint, And Knee Joint, And Hip Joint

How the Gluteus maximus affects and is affected by the SI-joint while standing. More than just a hip muscle, the Gluteus maximus works on the SI-joint and the knee joint as well as the hip joint.

The Long Hip Muscles

The long hip muscles attach to the tibia and fibula. They also attach to the corner points of the pelvis making these key muscles for hip bone control as well as controlling rotation of the shin bones relative to the femur.

The Hamstrings

The hamstrings are a group of muscles along the back of the thigh that work on the hip joint and the knee joint. Although the biceps femoris short head and adductor magnus long head are single joint muscles, I've included them as hamstrings for convenience.'

Glute And Hamstring Anatomy For Yoga

Hamstring Anatomy for yoga practitioners, focusing on backbending and forward bending of the hips with knees bent and straight.

Biceps Femoris And Outer Hamstrings Pain

If you get pain along the outer hamstrings then its possibly the biceps femoris. Understanding how this muscle can help control or resist knee rotation may help in figuring out how to alleviate pain in the outer hamstrings.

Hamstring Problems

With the hamstrings, the better you understand how they work, in conjunction with other muscles, coupled with the ability to feel and control your hamstrings, the easier it is to deal with hamstring problems.

Long Hip Flexor Muscles

Taking the Slack out of Your Long Hip Flexor Muscles for more effective hamstring stretching.

The Sartorius

Sartorius works on both the hip and the knee. It can be used to flex the hip and it can be used to bend the knee or rotate the shin relative to the femur. It can also be used to help stabilize the knee.

Hip Flexor Flexibility And Strength

High Lunge

High lunge can be used to both stretch and strengthen the hip flexors. It can also be used to develop awareness and control if you focus on lifting and lowering the back knee smoothly.

Bent Knee Hip Flexor Stretches Or "Quad Stretches"

Got tight hip flexors? These bent knee hip flexor stretches or quad stretches might help. Two effectively stretch your hip flexors in any stretch, these two key points may help.

Couch Stretch For The Hip Flexors

The couch stretch is a hip flexor stretch that can affect (and be affected by) the knee. Learn some basic hip flexor and knee anatomy to help make this stretch more effective (and less uncomfortable).

Hip Flexor Stretching And Strengthening

How do you stretch the hip flexors, how do you strengthen them? Why are you hip flexors tight?

Hip Flexor Strengthening Exercises

Some hip flexor strengthening exercises.

Supine Leg Lifts, A Simple Way To Strengthen The Hip Flexors

Supine leg lifts are one way of strengthening the hip flexors, particularly the sartorius and tensor fascia latae. Learn simple options for controlling your hip bones to reduce lumbar shear force.

Hip Joint Centering And Strengthening

Hip Joint Popping And Centering The Hip Joint To Avoid It

One way to avoid Hip Joint Popping is by learning to feel the hip joint so that you can keep it centered. So what does it mean to center the hip joint?

Hip Strengthening Exercises While Balancing On One Foot

One way of finding and fixing hip problems is to do standing hip strengthening exercises while balancing on one foot.

Standing Hip Exercises

If you have lower back pain, instead of working on your abs (or rather than just working on your abs) something you should consider is working on your hip joints, with standing hip exercises while balancing on one foot.

Hip Muscle Flexibility

Armpit Pose

Armpit pose is a combination of hip opening, twisting and shoulder stretching. The nice thing about it, if you can get into it, is that you can use body weight to help you deepen your twist and the shoulder stretch.

Half Happy Baby Hip Stretch

Happy baby hip stretch can be used as a substitute for low lunge and as a preparation (or alternative) for marichyasana type yoga poses as well as foot behind the head. And it's an easy way to stretch the hip extensors without involving the hamstrings.

Hip Extensor Stretching Variations

Low lunge, happy baby and other hip extensor stretching variations that can also be used as a prep for hamstring stretching and/or to help strengthen the arms.

Hip Stretches

The hip stretches included on this page can be used to stretch and improve flexibility of the hip flexors, hip extensors, adductors and abductors.


Alphabetical Pose Index

Alphabetical index of yoga poses.

Alphabetical Yoga Poses Index

Alphabetical listing of yoga poses with links to detailed instructions for those yoga poses.

Anatomy, Proprioception, Pain, And Posture

An index of all anatomy, proprioception, pain, and posture related articles.

Dealing With Pain And Poor Posture

Pain is a pretty useful signal. In general, it's your brain telling you something isn't right. With poor posture, instead of dealing with a pain signal, poor posture is something you can see and in some cases feel.

Improving Flexibility

Links to articles on improving flexibility through a range of stretching methods including active and passive stretching.

Page Index (Alphabetical)

Sensational yoga poses alphabetical page index.

Sensational Yoga Poses

Learning to feel and control our body using a first principles approach means being able to apply that same awareness and control to any activity. We can use it to deal with problems as well as improve qualities like flexibility, strength and body awareness. Sensations that drive sensational yoga poses include: muscular effort, tension, force, and pressure.

Sensational Yoga Poses Blog

Sensational Yoga Poses Blog, page index and yoga pose index.

Shoulder Yoga

Shoulder yoga improves shoulder flexiblity and strength by focusing on shoulder and ribcage awareness while stretching or exercising the shoulders. Shoulder strength and flexibility can also be improved by also practicing elbow awareness and control, including forearm rotation.

Tensegrity Index

Links to articles about tensegrity and how we can create it in posture and movement (and why we might want to).

Yoga For De-Stressing

Yoga for de-stressing (or stress relief) doesn't have to be about doing particular yoga poses. In its simplest form, stress relief can occur simply from not thinking. How do you do that?

Yoga For Flexibility

Flexibility is the ability to turn muscles on and off through a wide range of motion. Yoga for flexibility articles focus on specific muscle activations you can use to improve your flexibility.

Yoga For Strength

Yoga for strength includes includes progressions to help you work gradually towards more difficult exercises with exercises for strengthening the knees, hips, legs, spine, back, abs, shoulders and arms.

Yoga Poses

Links to categorized yoga pose articles designed to help you better feel and control your body while doing yoga poses.

Yoga Poses

Links to categorized yoga pose articles designed to help you better feel and control your body while doing yoga poses.

Yoga Poses For Balance, Stability And Responsiveness

When doing yoga poses or exercises for balance, stability and responsiveness are basic requirements for finding balance and staying balanced. This is an index of pages relating to balance, stability and responsiveness.

Youtube Video Index

List of youtube videos from the take out the slack sensational yoga poses youtube channel

A Sanskrit Index Of Yoga Poses

An alphabetical sanskrit index of yoga poses with links to information on those poses.

Inner Thigh Flexibility And Strength

Adductor Stretches

Adductor stretches stretch the muscles of the inner thigh and include bound angle pose, hurdlers stretch or frog pose, wide leg seated forward bend, prone big toe pose, half side split pose, side to side splits or box splits.

Half Side Splits

Half side splits is a great way to work towards full side splits. It's also a great way to stretch the inner thighs. It's also very easy to add leverage or weight to increase the inner thigh stretch.

Knee Joint Integrity And Middle Splits

A lack of knee joint integrity may hold you back in middle splits. Improving knee joint integrity may help you get deepen your middle splits.

Stabilizing The Knee Joint In Middle Splits

Working towards middle splits it can help to work on knee stability. A lack of knee stability may be one reason for not making progress when working towards the box splits.

Knee Anatomy

Knee Anatomy For Yoga Teachers

Knee anatomy for yoga teachers looks at the movement possibilities of the knee, in particular, knee rotation which is rotation of the shin relative to the femur, and the muscles that help to control movements of the knee.

Knee Rotation

Part of keeping your knees healthy can include learning to control knee rotation.

The Knees

The better you understand your knees the easier it is to stabilize your knees and control them.

Knee Stability: Controlling Knee Rotation

Controlling knee rotation is a way of stabilizing the knees. I learned how to control knee rotation after a knee injury. I later learned to use the muscles that control knee rotation to improve hip flexibility in splits and forward bends.

Anatomy For Quadriceps Stretching

Make your quadriceps stretching more effective by understanding and controlling your anatomy.

Vastus Muscles

The vastus muscles can be used to add tension to the long hip muscles for better knee, hip bone and even low back stability.

How To Activate Your Quads

Do you know how to activate your quads? Is neural inhibition impeding your ability to activate your quads or is it something simpler?

Anchoring The Biceps Femoris Short Head Muscle

To counter act a collapsed arch or flat foot, you may find it helpful to anchor the biceps femoris short head muscle. And this can start with muscles of the hip like gluteus maximus, medius and adductor brevis.

The Popliteus

Although small, the popliteus may be a very important muscle for controlling and stabilizing knee rotation.

Knee Pain And Other Knee Problems

Understanding how the knee connects to the hip bone (and foot) for easy fixes for some knee pain problems.

Vastus Intermedius, Preventing Knee Pain

A muscle that shouldn't be ignored with respect to knee pain and function is vastus intermedius. Providing the three deep layers of the quadricep tendon, it is integral to its architecture.

How Mood And Posture Can Affect Your Knees

Believe it or not but good posture (which means your spine and ribcage) can have an affect on your knees. That in turn can mean that your mood, or emotions can affect your knees also.

Medial Collateral Ligament Pain

Medial Collateral Ligament Pain

Sartorius And Inner Knee Pain While Running

One way to prevent sartorius muscle inner knee pain while running is to resist the sartorius muscle. It may also help to take out the slack from the sartorius.

It Band Knee Pain (Outer Knee Pain)

The IT Band runs down the side of the thigh from the crest of the hip to the tibia. Knee pain can occur where it inserts into the tibia.

Knee And Quad Stretch And Strengthen

Knee Joint Stability

A bent knee allows the shin to rotate relative to the thigh. When stabilizing the knee it helps to think in terms of resisting changes in knee bend as well as changes in shin rotation.

Knee Strengthening

A very simple way to strengthen the knees in a variety of yoga poses and exercises is to activate the calf muscles. Not just the gastrocnemius, but the soleus also.

Sensational Knee Strengthening Exercises

To improve the resiliency of your knees it can help to exercise them in a variety of positions. The following yoga poses can be used as knee strengthening exercises. The trick is to activate your knees while doing them.

Quadriceps Stretching

These quadriceps stretching poses work more on the rectus femoris, which is the only one of the quadriceps muscles that is a hip flexor.

Sensational Quad Stretches

How do you make quad stretches sensational? By anchoring your quads. This is something you can feel and it also helps to make your quad stretches more effective.

Working Towards A Kneeling Quadriceps Stretch

Working towards a kneeling quadriceps stretch you first need to be able to kneel. If you have difficulty kneeling, you may find it helps to activate your quadriceps.

Working Towards Lying Quadriceps Stretch

Some exercises and yoga poses for working towards a lying quadriceps stretch one leg at a time.

Low Back Anatomy

Transverse Abdominis Function

A look at the function of three parts of the transverse abdominis and how they work with other muscles to stabilize and control the SI Joints, sacrolumbar joint, lumbar spine and thoracolumbar junction.

Transverse Abdominis Exercises

The transverse abdominis muscle can be broken down into three parts. Transverse abdominis exercises for all three parts can be used to stabilize the SI Joint, lumbar spine and the lower portion of the ribcage.

Anatomy And Biomechanics Of Low Back Stability

Anatomy and Biomechanics of Low Back Stability covers the muscles of the low back and related body parts and how they can interact to stabilize the low back while standing.

Anatomy Of The Lower Back

To deal with lower back pain, and to use the back effectively, anatomy of the lower back includes the lumbar spine, sacrum, hip bones, lower ribs and lower thoracic spine.

The Lower Back Redefined

Dealing with lower back pain, it can help to redefine the low back to include the sacrum, hip bones, SI joints and ribs, as well as the lumbar spine.

The Thoracolumbar Fascia (Tlf)

Thoracolumbar Fascia connects gluteus maximus, latissimus dorsai, transverse abdominus, spinal erectors and biceps femoris, can help stabilize lumbar spine and si joint.

Lower Back Muscles

Lower back muscles include muscles that attach directly to the lumbar spine. They also include muscles that cross the lumbar spine without actually connecting to the lumbar vertebrae.

Low Back Pain Anatomy

Low Back Pain

Do you have low back pain? Learn how to activate your multifidus (along with your psoas and your piriformis) to stabilize and straighten your lumbar spine. Use your pelvic floor muscles to help.

Low Back Pain Anatomy For Yoga Teachers

Do forward bends hurt your lower back? Low back pain anatomy for yoga teachers looks at the possible cause and how to prevent it.

Low Back Pain And Fallen Arches

Low back pain and fallen arches may be related. Learn how to fix them both, without using orthotics.

Low Back Stretch And Strengthen

Lower Back Stretches

The following lower back stretches may help to alleviate low back pain.

Hip Stability Exercises

With standing yoga hip stability exercises the goal is to feel the hips and stabilize the pelvis relative to the thighs. The abs then have a stable foundation from which to control the spine and ribcage.

Standing Exercises For Low Back Pain

Effective techniques for dealing with low back pain can differ depending on the cause of your low back pain. In these standing exercises for low back pain, a few different muscle control options are provided to help you find one that works for you.

Yoga Postures For Back Pain

The following is a series of gentle yoga for back pain relief. The head is supported in nearly all postures allowing the muscles of the back and hip to relax in a variety of positions.


Chakra Meditation

Energize your chakras and tune into your body with this chakra meditation. Use your bones as landmarks to help located each of your chakras in turn.

Standing Meditation

Doing a standing meditation is a great way to learn to feel your body and become more aware. Practice feeling your bones and joints and aligning yourself with gravity.

Meridian Stretching

Bladder Meridian Stretches

The bladder meridian runs down the back of the neck, body and legs ending at the feet. These meridian stretches open it by working on the back of the body.

Gall Bladder Meridian Stretches

The Gall Bladder meridian runs down the side of the body. These meridian stretches open it by stretching the side of the waist, ribcage and legs.

Heart, Pericardium And Lung Meridian Stretches

Meridian stretches for lung, pericardium and heart meridians. These stretches work on the front of the shoulder, arm and wrist.

Kidney Meridian Stretches

These meridian stretches work on the kidney, liver and spleen meridians by stretching the inner thighs and by twisting the torso. You can also learn to do side splits by first doing half side split.

Large Intestine, Triple Heater And Small Intestine Meridian Stretches

The small intestine, pericardium and large intestine meridians run up the back of the arm and neck. Use these meridian stretches to stretch the back of the shoulder, wrist and neck.

Meridian Stretches

Meridian stretches uses TCM meridians to guide either a complete stretch of the body or a focused stretch. Both meridians and associated elements can be used to guide the order in which you stretch the body.

Stomach Meridian Stretches

The stomach meridian runs down the front of your face, body and legs. Use these meridian stretches to open the stomach line and stretch the front your spine, shoulders, neck and legs. You can also stretch your psoas.


Correspondances Between The Meridians And Chakras

Meridians and chakras are both elements of energetic systems within the body. Five element theory and yin and yang can be used to tie these two systems together.

The 12 Normal Meridians

The 12 Normal TCM meridians are linked in a network with a specific pattern of flow. Both the meridians and the associated elements can be used for guiding the order in which parts of the body are stretched and strengthened.

The Large Intestine Meridian

meditating on the large intestine meridian and its associated element, metal.

The Lung Meridian

The lung meridian is associated with the element metal. You can think of metal as condensing and pulling inwards.

The Stomach Meridian

Meditate on your stomach meridian and stomach and on the element earth. Develop your body awareness and understand when you are stretching this meridian or energizing it.

Muscle Control, Joint Integrity, Proprioception

Anatomy As A Guide To Better Body Awareness

Why use anatomy as a guide to better body awareness? Because the things that move the body are also the things that allow you to feel it.

Anatomy As A Road Map To Experiencing Your Body

You don't need to know your anatomy to do yoga. But can be a useful guide or road map to experiencing your body.

Anatomy For Muscle Control

With basic anatomy for muscle control, learn where to direct your awareness to improve muscle control, proprioception and kinaesthetic awareness. You'll get a deeper experience of your body while using it, and from that improve your understanding.

Experiencing Your Anatomy

Experiencing your anatomy is for yogi's who want to learn to feel and control their own body and understand what they are feeling and controlling.

Muscle Anatomy For Yoga

Improve your kinaesthetic awareness. Understanding some basic muscle anatomy for yoga, learn where to direct your senses and how to better control your muscles.

Muscle Spindles And Proprioception

The muscle spindle is a type of muscle fiber embedded in connective tissue that senses tension and changes in tension.

Reciprocal Inhibition

Reciprocal inhibition works when muscles are creating movement. It doesn't work when you are holding a static stretch. So what should you do instead?

Sensational Anatomy

Sensational anatomy is anatomy that you can feel and experience directly in your own body.

Sensational Yoga Anatomy

Sensational yoga anatomy is designed to help you better understand your body by directly experiencing it and consciously controlling it.

Yoga Anatomy, Biomechanics, Muscle Control And Proprioception

Learn to Better Feel, Control, and Understand Your Body

How Joints Resist Compression

How do skeletal joints deal with a range of compressive forces?

How Muscles And Joints Work Together

If joints are friction free then muscles on opposing sides of a joint can work together to share loads. The question is, how do you keep joints friction free? That's one of the questions I attempt to answer in: how muscles and joints work together.

How To Know If Your Joints Are Lubricated

How do you know if your joints are lubricated? If you know when they aren't you can do something about it and so keep your joints lubricated, avoiding the potential need for joint replacement surgery.

Hydrodynamic And Hydrostatic Joint Lubrication

A key for longer lasting joints is understanding how high frequency (and thus fast) movements can be used to lubricate joints hydrodynamically, while active muscle tension can be used to lubricate joints hydrostatically.

Joint Centration:

Joint centration is a fancy word for centering a joint so that there is balance between space and tension in all the related elements.

Joints And Muscles

While bones form a framework for our body and while our brain(s) controls everything, in terms of feeling and controlling our body while moving it, the three most important differential elements are connective tissue, joints and muscles.

Pelvis, Spine, Ribcage Anatomy

External Obliques

Learn to feel and control your external obliques and use them in a yoga pose like Revolving Triangle

Intercostal Muscles

Along with the spinal erectors and levator costalis, the intercostal muscles can be used to increase the mobility of your ribcage and help you to get a better feel for it.

Internal Obliques

Learning to understand the internal obliques and internal intercostals and how you can use them when doing yoga poses.

The Obliques And Intercostals

The obliques and intercostals can be used to help stabilize and control the ribs and hip bones. They can be used in sliding actions of the ribcage relative to the pelvis as well as sidebends and twists.

Ribcage Mobility

Understanding how the abs, intercostals, spinal erectors and other muscles can affect your ability to feel and control your ribcage.

The Ribcage

Stabilizing the ribcage can make both pulling and pushing actions with the arms easier. Working on ribcage mobiliity can make it easier to apply arm strength in a wider variety of positions.

Levator Costarum

Having difficulty bending your thoracic spine backwards? Use your Levator Costarum muscles to lift your back ribs. Then use your erector spinae to bend your spine (and ribcage) backwards.

Serratus Posterior Inferior

Serratus Posterior Inferior can be used to help anchor the latissimus dorsai muscle making it easier to do chin ups or pull ups for example.


Hi, I'M Neil Keleher

Hii, I'm Neil Keleher and one of my primary interests is learning (and teaching) how to be more conscious.

Jim Bennitt

An interview with Yogi Jim Bennitt

Richard Freeman And Metaphors

I'd been a bit dubious before I actually took one of his workshops, but I have to say, Richard Freemans Yoga metaphors are really helpful. It's like anatomy instruction made beautiful

Richard Freeman Workshop Notes

These are some notes from a workshop that I took with Richard Freeman at Space Yoga studio in Taipei. He reminded me a lot of the actor Hugo Weaving, in a good way. And I laughed and learned alot.

Richard Freeman, Moving Beyond Technique

One thing that Richard Freeman talked about in a workhop at space yoga in taipei was techniques and how they don't work all the time. How do you then move beyond technique?


Locust Pose For Text Neck

Locust pose for strengthening the back of the neck to counterbalance bad posture from excessive phone and computer use (tech or text neck).

Fixing Forward Head Posture

Head forward posture can result from computer work, stress, or poor body awareness. Here's some simple exercises for fixing forward head posture.

Tech Neck, Text Neck And How To Avoid Them Both

One way to counteract text or tech neck is to exercise in such a way that you learn to feel your neck and head and chest and how they relate. You can then learn to sense when you have good neck posture.

From Slouch To Zero-Slouch, Exercises To Fix Your Posture

Fixing your posture doesn't have to be difficult. Go from slouch to zero-slouch easily with these simple posture fixing exercises.

Improve Your Posture

Improve awareness of your spine, ribcage and head for better breathing, to help improve your posture and as a foundation for your arms and legs.

Yoga To Improve Posture

You don't have to be a yogii to have good posture. Yoga to improve posture includes simple exercises to help you find good posture (and keep it) without having to do lots of yoga poses.


A Yoga Routine Video For Strengthening Arms And Legs Via Friction And Pressure

This yoga routine video is designed to help you strengthen your arms and legs via the use of friction and pressure. It also teaches you how to become more aware of your body.

Active Stretching

Active stretching teaches you muscle control to not only improve flexibility but also body awareness. You'll learn how to adjust postures for better feel as well as more control through a broader range of motion.

Balance Basics

Our bodies come included with built in sensors.We can learn to use these sensors to help usconsciously balance. Balance Basics teaches you how.

Know To Flow

Simple tips for moving in and out of the flow at will, making learning an enjoyable experience, and rewriting your operating system

Sensational Yoga Ebooks (And Videos)

Sensational Yoga ebooks and videos are designed to help you experience your body while focusing on specific poses, actions or parts of the body.

The Dance Of Shiva

The dance of shiva is a movement practice with many benefits. Chief among them is that it teaches you how to work creatively within a set of limits. But it also teaches you that you can create the limits you work within.

The Hip Control Guide

The Hip Control Guide includes exercises to help you improve awareness and control of your hip muscles.

The Hip Control Guide

Want to learn how to feel and control your hip stabilizer muscles? The hip control guide teaches you how to feel them and how to use them to make yoga poses like forward and back bending easier with less effort.

Working Towards Wheel Pose

The working towards wheel pose ebook teaches you basic body first so that you can feel and control your spine, hips and shoulders, so that working towards difficult poses (in this case wheel pose) is easier.

Yoga Basics 1 And Yoga Basics 2

One approach to learning yoga is to simply practice yoga poses. The approach in Yoga For Beginners 1 is to help you to learn to feel your body while doing yoga poses.

Yoga For Your Shoulders Ebook

Yoga for your shoulders starts with simple neck and ribcage awareness exercises.This is so that in the shoulder exercises that follow, your shoulder muscles (particularly the muscles that stabilize your scapular) have a stable foundation from which to work.

Improve Strength, Flexibility And Body Awareness

Improve Strength, Flexiblity, Body Awareness. Muscle control is at the heart of all of these.

Muscle Control Package, Learn To Feel Your Body

Muscle Control Package, 3 options to help you improve muscle control and give you a better feel for your body.

Smart Yogi Proprioceptive Elements

Smart yogi proprioceptive elements: Simple exercises for de-stressing, and improving body awareness that you can do anywhere.

5 Sensational Yoga Routines For Beginners

5 Sensational Yoga Routines for beginners for improving joint health, and for exercising your spine, shoulders, hip, knees and feet.

Action Vectors

The action vectors yoga video workshop teaches you to use floor reaction forces to move specific parts of your body in clear directions. It also teaches you how to lift efficiently and mindfully into poses like side plank, down dog and yoga push up chaturunga dandasana.

Conscious Muscle Control

Learn to consciously control your quads and hip flexors with Conscious Muscle Control: Quads and Superficial Hip Flexors. This downloadable video course teaches you how to feel and activate your quadriceps (the vastus muscles) as well as the rectus femoris, tensor fascae latae and sartorius muscles.

Driving Lessons For Your Body: Learn To Feel And Control Your Spine

Learn to feel and control your spine, SI joints and hips

Driving Lessons For Your Body: Learn To Feel And Control Your Spine

Learn to feel and control your spine, improve posture, breath control, ribcage control, with a taste of controlling your hip bones.

Extreme Stability For Yoga

Extreme Stability for Yoga teaches you how to work from the ground up when creating stability, whether you are doing poses on your hands or your feet (or some combination of both).

Focused Floor Pressing

Focused Floor Pressing is a muscle control and proprioception technique that you can use to improve balance, strength and flexibility as well as overall body awareness.

Foot Stability For Proprioception

Foot stabilization can lead to better knee and hip control. These foot exercises are designed to help improve proprioception and are a prepatory exercise for learning better knee and hip muscle control.

Frictional Muscle Control

Frictional Muscle Control exercises develop stability, strength and body awareness. This pdf and video takes you through the basics of frictional muscle control and also includes exercises for creating stability when you can't use friction, such as when you are standing on one leg.

Frictional Resistance

Frictional resistance is a technique for improving muscle control and proprioception. It can also be used for strengthening the arms, legs and core.

Improve Glute And Psoas Control Via The Kua

These 5 yoga routines help you learn to feel and control your kua.

Learn To Feel And Control Your Hamstrings

Learn to feel and control your hamstrings.

Learn To Feel Your Body

Learn to feel your body by practicing muscle control.

Leg Muscle Control And Proprioception

With Leg Muscle Control and Proprioception learn to feel and control the muscles of your legs, from hip bone to toes.

Mindful Muscle Control Video Workshops

These 6 mindful muscle control video workshop routines help you to learn muscle control mindfully. You can then be more present in your body while doing yoga, or anything else where muscles are active.

Muscle Control

Muscle Control is a video yoga workshop designed to help you learn muscle control and proprioception. This type of muscle control can be used to improve strength, body awareness and flexiblity.

Muscle Control And Proprioception For Better Flexibility

One way to work towards better flexibility is to first learn how to feel and control the muscles that you are working on. You can then feel your body, and figure out what your body needs to get deeper into a stretch.

Muscle Control For Better Flexibility

The Muscle control for better flexibility ebook teaches you simple muscle activation techniques that can make it easier to improve your flexibility. Techniques focus on forward and back bending the hips but can be applied to other movements also.

Sensational Leg Anatomy

Sensational Leg Anatomy is a set of muscle control and proprioception exercises for the legs that you can do while standing. Includes exercises for improving hip bone awareness, foot and shin control as well as learning to feel and control muscles of the hip, thigh and lower leg.

Sensational Leg Anatomy

Muscle Control, Proprioception and Anatomy (Legs) is a set of Muscle Control, Proprioception and Anatomy (Legs) exercises for the legs that you can do while standing. Includes exercises for improving hip bone awareness, foot and shin control as well as learning to feel and control muscles of the hip, thigh and lower leg.

Simple Hip Control Exercises

Improve hip joint control with these simple exercises for moving and stabilizing your hip joints. You'll improve body awareness at the same time.

Thigh Muscle Control, Front And Back

The Thigh Muscle Control Front and Back yoga video teaches you how to feel and activate your quads, superficial hip flexors, hamstrings and gluteus maximus.

Psoas Anatomy

Psoas Anatomy

Psoas anatomy, stretching the psoas, using it to flex the hip, preventing lumbar shear while doing reclining hero pose.

Psoas Major Anatomy For Yoga Teachers

Psoas major anatomy for yoga teachers (fascia connections to kidneys, diaphragm and 12th ribs) along with a reclining psoas stretch.

Psoas Muscle Anatomy

The psoas muscle, using it to transition from up dog to down dog, role as a lumbar stabilizer, stretching the lower fibers of the psoas.

The Psoas

The psoas can be used to help stabilize the lumbar spine. And it can be used to flex the hips or to help stabilize them.

Understanding The Psoas

The psoas could be thought of as a lumbar stabilizer. But how does it stabilize the spine when the hips are bent forwards at ninety degrees or more? And how do you activate it? Read on for a deeper understanding of the psoas.

Psoas Stretching

Psoas Release

A tight psoas may be the result of standing with hips relaxed (and pelvic floor tight.) Learn how to stabilize the hips and help your psoas release.

Psoas Stretch

The small actions in this standing psoas stretch can be used to stretch both the upper and lower fibers of the psoas muscle.

Psoas Stretches

One way to help stretch your psoas (or stabilize it) is to activate your external obliques while doing psoas stretches. So that your external obliques have room to contract, lengthen them first.

Psoas Stretches

This selection of psoas stretches with a focus on lengthening the lower fibers of the psoas. You'll need some body awareness for these stretches but you may find that these stretches also help you to develop it.

Reclining Psoas Stretch

A reclining psoas stretch I learned from a Richard Freeman Workshop. The better you understand your anatomy the easier it is to work on your body effectively.

Standing Psoas Stretch Variations

Variations of the standing psoas stretch that use the same basic actions.

Stretching The Psoas

Some tips for activating and stretching the psoas along learning why your psoas might be tight in the first place.

Ribcage Flexibility And Control

Nauli Kriya

Nauli kriya is a great party trick (look what I can do) but it is also a great way to train the intercostals and stretch the diaphragm.

Anchoring Your Diaphragm

If you have trouble calming your breathing while doing diaphragmatic breathing one possibility is that you aren't anchoring your respiratory diaphragm.

Learning To Feel And Control The Respiratory Diaphragm

Having trouble breathing deeply? Learn how to feel and control your respiratory diaphragm so that you can breath deeply with ease.

Learning To Feel Your Diaphragm And Psoas

Do you have trouble feeling your diaphragm or your psoas? Use quiet time on the toilet to practice feeling your respiratory diaphragm. You might also be able to feel your psoas.

Improving Thoracic Mobility And Awareness

Improve thoracic mobility and awareness with easy breathing and bending exercises for the ribcage and thoracic spine.

Upper Back Exercises For Yoga

These upper back exercises improve thoracic awareness and control for yoga and can be used to strengthen week upper backs and improve postural awareness.

Shoulder And Arm Anatomy

Arm Stability Via The Elbows And Hands

When the hands are on the floor in yoga poses like handstand, chaturanga, wheel pose or while doing yoga push ups, one option for creating arm stability is to work from the ground upwards. That can mean stabilizing the hands, fingers and the elbows.

Elbow Joint Anatomy For Yoga Teachers

Elbow Joint Anatomy for Yoga Teachers, elbow stability for better shoulder function in chaturanga, downward dog and other arm supported yoga poses.

Fixing (Or Preventing) Scapular Winging

How do you prevent or remedy scapular winging? It can actually start with certain spinal erector muscles, and can include sequenced activation of the serratus anterior, lower trapezius, external shoulder rotators and latissimus dorsai.

Winged Scapula

Winged scapula, the relevant anatomy and how to fix it.

Pectoralis Minor

Pectoralis minor is the back pack muscle, it pulls the top of the shoulder blade forwards. Learn how to activate stretch and use this muscle.

Serratus Anterior

Feeling serratus anterior is difficult. You can however learn to deliberately activate it while doing plank, side plank, wheel pose and even while doing a push up. The key is where you put the focal point of your awareness.

Serratus Anterior Muscle Awareness

The serratus anterior muscle both spreads the shoulder blades and prevents the shoulder blades from being pushed together. It can be used to stabilize the shoulder blades in yoga poses like downward dog, handstand, warrior 1, warrior 2, chaturanga dandasana and wheel pose among others.

The Trapezius Muscle

The trapezius muscle is important in preventing shoulder impingement in lifted arm yoga poses. Learn how to activate in in lifted arm yoga poses including sun salutations.

Scapular Awareness Exercises

The more aware you are of your shoulder blades, the better you can feel what they are doing and the better you can control them. For better scapular stability first work on improving scapular awareness.

Scapular Stabilization Exercises

Want to improve scapular stability? These Scapular stabilization exercises help you increase strenght gradually, at the same time improving body awareness.

Shoulder Anatomy

More on shoulder anatomy, this time looking at the rotator cuff, anatomy trains and using tension to create stability.

Shoulder Anatomy For Yoga Teachers

Shoulder anatomy for yoga teachers: learn the landmarks of the shoulderblade and the muscles that attach to them for improved body awareness and shoulder control.

Shoulders And Arms

Learing to distinguish anatomy and actions of the shoulders, arms (and ribcage) so that you can use them more effectively together.

Activating The Latissimus Dorsai Muscle

Some simple techniques for activating the latissimus dorsai while doing yoga poses, plus how it can be usefully activated to support the head, back and shoulders.

Rotator Cuff Anatomy

Shoulder rotators and rotator cuff anatomy, a look at the shoulder muscles that rotate the humerus relative to the scapula.

Shoulder Flexibility And Control

A Sequence Of Arm Stretches

A sequence of arm stretches for a complete and balanced stretching of the shoulder and arm muscles. Includes arms cross the chest, out to the side, up and back and down and back, internally rotate and externally rotated positions.

Active Shoulder Stretches

This sequence of active shoulder stretches can be done while standing. Muscle power provides the stretch so that the shoulders are exercised and stretched.

Hip And Shoulder Stretches

These yoga poses act as combined hip and shoulder stretches. The stretch the hip and shoulders at the same time.

Shoulder Flexibility Stretches

Shoulder flexibility stretches with scapular awareness. In these shoulder stretches first focus on positioning the scapula and then on stretching the shoulder.

Two Simple Shoulder Stretches For The Desk Bound Yogi

Two very simple and basic shoulder stretches include reaching the arms up and reaching the arms back and up. These stretches can be helpful if you spend a lot of time at a desk infront of a computer. This article explains what to focus on while doing these exercises.

Shoulder Impingement

A look at shoulder Impingement and some exercises to help you become more aware of your shoulders and how to use them.

Rotator Cuff Exercises

These rotator cuff exercises can be done while standing or sitting and can be used as part of a warm up for a yoga class or any other activity where the arms are used.

Shoulder Rotation Exercises

The exercises on this page include shoulder rotation exercises combined with forearm rotation exercises along with tips of differentiating them from each other.

Shoulder Strengthening Exercises For Yoga

Shoulder strengthening exercises can start with deliberate control of the scapulae or shoulder blades while the hands are bearing body weight.

Standing Shoulder Strengthening Exercises

Standing Yoga Poses can be used as shoulder strenthening exercises. It's also a way of practicing body awareness via shifting your weight.

Dealing With Wrist Pain In Crow Pose (Bakasana)

Someone asked me about how to deal with wrist pain in crow pose. Here's some suggestions.

Si Joint And Pelvic Floor Anatomy

The Sacrum

The sacrum forms the base of the spine and connects it to the pelvis via the si joint. The muscles of the pelvic diaphragm can be used to tilt the sacrum backwards (counter nutate) relative to the pelvis. Learn how to do this action and why you might want to do it.

The Si Joints, Their Affect On Spine And Leg Control

The focus of this article is to improve our understanding of the SI joint so that we can operate it and use it more effectively.

Why Do We Have Si Joints?

Why do we have SI joints? Why allow the hip bones and sacrum to move even just slightly relative to each other? Pelvic Tensegrity might be one answer.

The Pc Muscle

Learn to control and differentiate the muscles of the pelvic diaphragm, including the pc muscle. These muscles can have an affect on the Sacroiliac and hip joint and may be useful in back bending yoga postures.

The Pelvic Floor Muscles

Learn to control and differentiate the pelvic floor muscles, including the pc muscle. Working along with the lower transverse abdominis and even the lumbar multifidus, these muscles can help to stabilize the SI joints whether nutated, counter-nutated or both.

Pectoralis Minor

Pectoralis minor is the back pack muscle, it pulls the top of the shoulder blade forwards. Learn how to activate stretch and use this muscle.

Effectively Activating Transverse Abdominis

Effectively Activating Transverse Abdominus can mean better stability for the SI Joint as well as for the lumbar and lower thoracic spine.

The Sacrotuberous Ligament

Sacrotuberous ligament tension can be affected by the gluteus maximus, obturator internus, multifidus, biceps femoris and piriformis. How does this affect SI joint stability?

Sitting Bone And Sacrotuberous Ligament Pain

The sacrotuberous ligament helps to protect the si joint. Muscles that can add tension to this ligament include the gluteus maximus, the hamstrings and possibly the piriformis.

The Sacroiliac Joints

The sacroiliac joints can be affected by the pelvic floor muscles, transverse abdominis, multifidus, piroformis and/or the gluteus maximus. Develop awareness and control of these muscles and you may be able to alleviate SI Joint pain or at the very least, get better at stabilizing it.

Sitting Bone Pain

Sitting bone pain while bending forwards may be a result of a facilitated (overactive) obturator internus or coccygeus muscle.

Dual Si Joint Stabilization

Dual SI joint stability can be useful in symetrical poses where the spine is bent forwards or backwards. Stabilizing the si joint can make it safer to bend the spine forwards or backwards.

Sacroiliac Joint Exercises

Basic movements of the sacroiliac joint are nutation (or nodding forwards) and counter nutation. Practice with these simple si joint exercises.

Sacroiliac Joint Stability During Forward Bending

Do forward bends cause sacroiliac joint shearing forces? Well if they do, then one way to avoid sacroiliac joint shear forces when forward bending is by adding tension to sacrotuberous ligament.

Sacroiliac Joint Stabilization

SI jiont stabilization can in part be achieved via muscles that act via two key ligaments, the sacrotuberous ligament and the long dorsal sacroiliac ligament.

Si Joint Stability In Marichyasana

SI joint stability in marichyasana and other seated yoga poses can be created with simple stabilizing muscle actions.

Single Si Joint Stabilization

SI Joints can be stabilized together or individually. Single si joint stability uses hip muscles to stabilize both the hip joint and SI joint together.

Single Side Si Joint Stability

To alleviate a chronically tight or engaged pelvic floor, one possible avenue is to learn how to create single side SI joint stability.

Spinal Erectors And Intrinsic Back Muscle Anatomy

Spinal Erectors

Learn to use your spinal erectors to bend your spine backwards. The feeling when they activate is like lines of tension running down either side of your spine.

The Intrinsic Back Muscles

The intrinsic back muscles, aka deep back muscles, can be used to feel the spine as well as control and stabilize it. These muscles include the spinal erectors as well as the smaller muscles that run along the back of the spinal vertebrae.

The Lumbar Multifidus

Multifidus anatomy for yoga teachers, how it works with the transverse abdominus, quadratus lumborum and psoas major muscles to support and shape the lumbar spine.

Spine Anatomy

The Transverse Abdominis

The transverse abdominis muscle can affect the SI joint, lumbar and lower thoracic spine stability. It can be utilized in various diaphragmatic or belly breathing techniques and act as a tension adjuster for the rectus abdominis as well as the obliques.

Spinal Anatomy

The spinal column is a series of stacked vertebrae which attach to the pelvis, ribs and skull. While each of the vertebrae has protrusions that act as points of attachment and as levers or muscles to more effectively act on them, the pelvis, ribcage and skull could be considered as extra long levers.

Your Spinal Column

Learn to feel your spinal column by focusing on its individual joints. Understand your spine so that you can use it safely and effectively.

An Exercise For Learning To Feel Your Spine

One way to work towards better posture is to learn to feel your spine. This exercise focuses on the lumbar and thoracic portion of the spine.

Feeling Your Spinal Column

One way of getting better at feeling your spinal column is to practice moving the individual vertebrae relative to each other. Put your awareness on the part you are moving so that you learn to feel the part you are focusing on.

Spine Stretch And Strengthen

Back Strengthening Yoga Poses

Back strengthening yoga poses can be used to strengthen the back of the body including hamstrings, glutes and both the lower and upper back.

Spinal Back Bending Exercises

For deeper and pain-free back bends for your spine and hips, learn to use your spinal erectors, gluteus maximus and hamstring muscles.

Spine Stretches

The following spine stretches include sidebending, front and back bending, twisting and sliding exercises for a stonger and more flexible spine.

Tuned Tension

Muscle Control

Body Awareness And Muscle Motor Control For Yoga

Muscle motor control is the ability to control muscle tissue. The compliment to it is sensitivity, the ability to feel tension in muscle and connective tissue. Both can be learned and improved. Both are functions of the brain.

Gaining Agency Through Muscle Control

Agency is the idea of having some say in how we act or what we do. It could be thought of as taking responsibility, of making decisions and taking action for ourselves and those around us. A simple way to give ourselves agency of our own body is through muscle control where muscle control is the ability not just to activate and relax muscles and connnective tissue at will, but also the ability to feel or notice them.

Muscle Control Basics

When you understand the basics of muscle control and proprioception, it's easier to improve stability, flexibility and coordination in yoga poses.

Muscle Control For Proprioception And Joint Lubrication

We need muscle control to protect our joints. It is what can keep them lubricated, preventing wear and tear on our joints articulating surfaces and protecting our joint capsules.

Muscle Control Principles

Muscle control principles give you guidelines for deliberately activating muscles. They provide a framework for understanding how muscles and joints interact and for understanding why muscle activation is a prerequisite for proprioception.

Muscles Are Force Sensors

Muscles don't just create force, they measure it. With muscle activation sensation and connective tissue tension, muscles are our primary engines of proprioception.

Why Learn Muscle Control

Why learn muscle control? I've used it to deal with pain, improve flexibility and to help me be present while using my body. It also helps me to understand my body and how it works.


Can Stretching Improve Proprioception?

Can stretching improve proprioception? If so how, and are there other ways to improve proprioception?

Connective Tissue Tension

Because connective tissue is a component of both joints (the joint capsule, tendons, ligaments) as well as muscles (investing fascia as well as tendons and ligaments), connective tissue tension can be used to help the brain assess tension in joint capsules as well as the amount of stretch a muscle is subject to.

Conscious Proprioception

Conscious proprioception is the ability to focus awareness on discrete elements of the body. It can lead to easier learning of physical activities or simply better movement and body control.

Conscious Proprioception And Change

When moving, or doing a pose, a clear idea can guide the way we use proprioception and control. That clear idea can be as simple as running or walking, or it might be a little more complex. In terms of change you could think of a clear idea as being the change that you want to create.

Feel Your Body

Why feel your body? So that you can use it easily. Learn to feel the relationships within your body so that you can improve body control, coordination and overall body awareness.

Improving Proprioception And Control

Proprioception can be learned and improved by appropriate posture adjustements. One possible ideal is to adjust posture with minimal effort so that the body can be felt with minimal effort.

Learning To Feel Your Body

One of the ways of learning to feel your body is using isolation and progressive integration so that you stay within the limits of short term memory. This process can actually feel quite nice since thinking is minimized. And while repetition is required, it isn't endless.

Mindful Muscle Control And Proprioception

Muscle control is actually a requirement for proprioception. And muscle control is what helps to protect our joints. Mindful muscle control helps you to notice correlations between muscle activation, movement and stability. It helps you to understand your body.

Proprioception And Flow

You can think of proprioception as the ability to feel your body (and how the parts of it relate). Feeling your body is one way of reliably getting into the flow.

Proprioception Requires Effort

Your iphone needs power in order to sense your touch. Proprioception needs muscle activity in order to sense your body.

Proprioception, Pain And Posture

Proprioception can be used to help deal with pain and poor posture. Proprioception is driven by muscle activation which in turn helps protect joints and can be used to fix poor posture.

Understanding Proprioception

Proprioception is the ability to sense your body and what it is doing. One way to understand proprioception is that it is created by the same things that create movement, your muscles.

Why Improve Body Awareness?

Why improve body awareness? So that you can use your body more effectively and fix problems yourself when they arise.


Articulated Tensegrity Systems

Is tensegrity maintained during movement and posture? Articulated tensegrity systems how tensegrity explains muscle inhibition during injury.

Balancing Space And Tension

Tensegrity structures are created from a balance of space and tension. A yoga pose that balances space and tension integrates the whole body and allows us to feel it and control it.

Creating Tensegrity In Yoga Poses

Creating tensegrity in yoga poses. What is tensegrity, why should we aim to achieve it when doing yoga or any other activity where mindfullness is required?

Fluid Tensegrity Joint Anatomy

Fluid tensegrity joint anatomy looks at the tendency of the body to maintain space within the joints. The question is, how is this space maintained?

Some Problems With Biotensegrity

Biotensegrity could be a useful tool for understanding how the body works. However there are some problems when it comes to applying it to posture and movement.


How is tensegrity maintained at the joints even as the body adopts non-tensegrity postures or movements? To make understand this easier it might be helpful to think in terms of inner body and outer body.

Tensegrity, Motor Control And Proprioception

Using a controllable bicycle wheel tensegrity as an analogy for ideal hip joint proprioception and control

Your Body As A Liberated Tensegrity Structure

How do you make a tensegrity liberated? By replacing static tension components with dynamically self adjustable tension components.


Arm Balance Videos

An index of Arm Balance videos which involve balancing on the hands with one or both legs supported by the arms. Mayurasana is included even though it breaks this rule.

Dance Of Shiva Videos

Dance of Shiva Videos including the basic movements and positions using only one arm.

Latest Video Uploads

See my latest yoga videos uploaded on youtube.

Leg And Knee Strength Videos

An index of videos focusing on Leg and Knee strengthening exercises and yoga poses, including foot exercises so that your leg muscles have a stable foundation.

Upper Body Awareness And Arm Control Exercise Videos

Improve upper body awareness and arm control exericses, including videos for thoracic and scapular awareness and control.

Yoga Balance Videos

An index of videos focusing on upright balance, including balancing on forefeet and balancing on one foot.

Yoga Pose Inversion Videos

This index of yoga pose inversion videos includes videos for getting comfortable while upside down while using a wall as well as learning to balance while upside down.

Yoga Routine And Mini Routine Videos

This index of Yoga Routine and Mini Routine Videos includes yoga routines and mini routines from 15 minutes duration up to an hour.

Yoga Videos

A collection of cagegorized yoga videos from my youtube page.

Yoga Pose Basics

Hatha Yoga Poses

A selection of Hatha yoga poses with suggestions for sequencing poses.

Tips For Sequencing Yoga Poses

Tips and suggestions for sequencing yoga poses.

Tips For Sequencing Yoga Poses 2

Tips and suggestions for sequencing yoga poses.

Yoga Pose Warm Ups

Not sure how to begin your yoga practice. Yoga pose warm ups includes simple actions and exercises for increasing body awareness whether you want to start with simple poses or something more complex like sun salutations.

Basic Yoga Poses

Basic yoga poses: poses and counterposes for different spine, hip and shoulder actions.

Basic Yoga Sequence

Basic yoga sequence for flexibility. Includes hip, hamstring, quad stretches and neck stretches and recovery exercises.

Basic Yoga Sequence

Basic yoga sequence for flexibility. Includes hip, hamstring, quad stretches and neck stretches and recovery exercises.

Basic Yoga Sequence

Basic yoga sequence for flexibility. Includes hip, hamstring, quad stretches and neck stretches and recovery exercises.

How Far Should You Push Into Discomfort?

How far should you push Into discomfort?

Modifying Yoga Poses

Knowing how to modify poses can make it easier to improve flexibility and strength and the ability to do more advanced versions of the same pose. It can also mean that even if you aren't doing the advanced version of a pose you are still doing the pose the way that an advanced yogi might, with a body that is open, integrated and alive in the pose even if it is a modified version of the pose.

Starting A Yoga Home Practice

If you want to do a yoga home practice, try to learn what you are trying to do in each pose. At the same time feel your body and respond based on what you are trying to do.

Using Yoga Poses To Learn Your Body

You can learn yoga poses and learn to feel your body at the same time. Here's an introduction to how.'

Yoga For Lazy People

It came to me that I do actually teach yoga for lazy people. That is to say, people who would rather work intelligently by learning to feel their body as well as control i.t

Yoga Notes

New in yoga notes, stretching the biceps. This is for people who have difficulty straightening the elbows because of tight biceps.

Yoga Poses

Arm Positions

Eagle Pose Arms And Legs

Learn how to work towards the arm position from eagle pose. If you first get the hang of eagle pose arms in isolation you can then combine it with various leg positions including eagle legs.

Grabbing The Hands Behind The Back (Prasarita Padotanasana C)

The arm position from prasarita padottanasana c can be used to stretch the front of the shoulders, but only if you can clasp your hands behind your back. Here are some suggestions for developing the flexibility stability and range of motion required.

Reverse Prayer

To get into reverse prayer position you can first practice internally rotating your shoulders. After that you can use this position to open your chest and stretch the fronts of your shoulders.

Shoulder Stretching Yoga Arm Positions

Yoga shoulder stretches include reverse prayer, eagle arms, dwikonasana (prasaritta padotanasana c), yoga cow face arm position and downward facing dog.

Arm-Balance Poses

Arm Balances

In most yoga arm balances you have to press your leg down against your arm in order to lift higher. To stay balanced when reaching a leg back, reach chest and shoulders forwards. Read more about bakasana, eka pada bakasana, eka pada koundinyasana, tittibasana.

Astavakrasana Yoga Arm Balance

A simple set of exercises for working towards the Astavakrasana Yoga Arm Balance.

Eka Pada Bakasana

Lifting up into eka pada bakasana from marichyasana A with tips on lifting up and balancing while transitioning from the binding yoga pose to the arm balance.

Galavasana (Flying Pigeon) Arm Balance

Prior to learning the Yoga arm balance called galavasana it can help to learn how to lift and stabilize the hips in pigeon pose. This page shows you how.


Here are some tips for getting your feet off of the floor when doing the arm balancing yoga pose called mayurasana.

Arm-Supported Poses

Arm Supported Yoga Poses

Arm supported yoga poses can be used to strengthen the arms and shoulders. Includes plank, chaturanga dandasana, downward dog, dolphin pose, side plank, wheel, reverse plank, table top pose.

Chaturanga Dandasana

Having difficulty lifting up into chaturanga dandasana (or lowering down)? Make this yoga pose easier by positioning your hands further ahead so that your forearms are angled and learn how to add tension to your torso and legs.

Chaturanga, A Smart Approach

Are you too weak to do Chatarunga Dandasana? Build arm strength, develop muscle control and body awareness by lifting into this Sensational Yoga Pose in stages.

Downward Facing Dog

How to actively stretch your calfs and shoulders in downward facing dog.

Reverse Plank, How To Make It Less Unfun

Reverse plank can be used to strengthen the hamstrings, glutes, spinal erectors and the shoulders. There are particular muscle activations you can use prior to entering the pose to make it more bearable.

Reverse Plank, Strengthening The Back Of Your Body

Lots of people hate purvottanasana aka reverse plank. There's a simple way of activating particular muscles to make this pose less hateful.'

Side Plank

A progression of side plank exercises for shoulder stability, inner and outer thigh strength, quad and hip flexor activation and hamstring strength.

Side Plank, Improving Your Balance

Balancing in side plank can be made easier to learn if you learn the necessary actions step-by-step with this sensational yoga poses yoga tutorial.

Side Plank, Shoulder Actions

To learn shoulder actions for side plank it can help to practice with the hips on the floor. As shoulder control improves, side plank pose can be made progressively more challenging.

Table Top Yoga Pose

Practice weighted scapular retraction in table top yoga pose. Use your adductor magnus muscles to press your pelvis upwards and your shin bones down.


Backbending The Spine

Learn how to feel and use your spinal erectors when doing Spinal Back Bending Yoga Poses. Learn how to combine this with backbending hip actions.

Backbending Yoga Poses

Back bending yoga poses you can activate the spinal erectors or relax them. You can activate the buttocks and hamstrings or relax them. Here's a look at various back bends and how you can use your muscles while doing them.

Bridge Pose, A Detailed Guide

In bridge pose should you or should you not clench clench your buttocks? Learn how to feel your spine and even your sacrum while doing this back bending yoga pose.

Bridge Pose, Backbending At The Spine Or The Hips

Where to bend your body when doing Bridge Yoga Pose with options for the Arms and Legs.

Camel Pose

Camel Yoga Pose or ustrasana is a kneeling pose that can be used to stretch the hip flexors. One key action that may help in getting your pelvis forwards more is pushing your hands forwards, either against your feet or against the floor.

Cobra Pose

Cobra Yoga pose can help you lengthen your spine and bend it backwards and strengthen your arms at the same time.

Locust Pose

Improve awareness and control of your thoracic spine and ribcage with locust pose. This pose can be used to both activate and feel your spinal erectors, the muscles at the back of the body.

Upward Facing Dog

Learn how to activate the back of your body (the posterior chain) while doing Upward Facing Dog.

Wheel Pose, Making It Easier

Do you find it hard to get up into wheel pose. Do you dread the moment you have to do it? Make this yoga pose easier by learning to use your legs to push your pelvis forwards and upwards.

Bound Lotus Variations

Ardha Baddha Padmottanasana

Ardha Baddha Padmottanasana or half bound lotus is a standing forward bend with one foot in lotus. The trick is learning to get in and out of this yoga pose without hurting your lotus knee.

Half Bound Lotus Seated

Steps for Binding in Seated Half Bound Lotus Pose as well as modifications if you can't bind, and actions you can do when you do bind.

Half Bound Lotus Yoga Pose

Work towards seated Half Bound Lotus Yoga Pose with exercises for closing the knee, stretching the hip rotators, practicing external rotation of the shin and activating and shaping the foot and ankle.

Marichyasana B

Marichyasana B is a forward bending binding yoga pose with the non-marichyasana leg in lotus. One way to prepare for this position is to use the janusirsasana C foot position.

Marichyasana D

Marichyasana is potentially dangerous for your knee. Here are some ideas for moving into this twisting lotus variation intelligently. Rather than worrying about binding, focus on feeling your body as you work deeper into this yoga pose.

Bound Poses

Binding Yoga Poses

Binding yoga poses require hip, shoulder and thoracic mobility. they can also be used to increase these mobilities.

Bound Side Angle Pose

Steps for working towards bound side angle so that you can bind a little more easily.

Marichyasana A, Learning To Bind

Trying to bind in marichyasana A, how to grab your hand behind your back.

Marichyasana B, Modified

Modified Marichyasana B is done with the other leg not in lotus. This pose can still be challenging to bind it, so some tips on how to bind with awareness.

Marichyasana Poses

Here's a look at the forward bending and twisting marichyasana yoga poses with an emphasis on learning how to bind. I've included two simple marichyasana variations that can make binding easier, even for those with limited flexibility.

Bound Twisting Poses

Ardha Matsyendrasana

Learning to Bind Intelligently in Ardha Matsyendrasana. Create space and add tension to this twisting and binding yoga pose.

Bound Twisting Side Angle Pose

Tips for working towards binding in Bound Twisting Side Angle Pose.

Marichyasana C, Making Binding Easier

How do you grab a wrist and bind with your hands behind your back in marichyasana C? The first step is to make your spine long so that you can use your spinal and thoracic muscles to deepen the twist so that binding is easier.


Counter Poses

The idea of counterposes is to help bring the body back into balance. Here's a look at several different ideas for counterposing yoga poses.

Counter Poses For Hip Openers

Hip openers generally involve stretching the inner thighs and/or stretching the hip while it is externally rotated. So how then do you counter pose these actions?


Foot Behind The Head

Foot behind the head can be a challenge both mentally and physically. To make it easier work towards it while laying on your back and prepare with variations of pigeon and happy baby yoga poses.

Forward Bending

Forward Bending Yoga Poses

Forward bending yoga poses can be used to stretch the back of the neck, spine, hips and ankles. They can also be used to strengthen the front of the body and the back.

Hamstring Stretching Poses

Compass Yoga Pose

In compass yoga pose the leg is behind the shoulder. Understanding this relationship you can use similiar poses to prepare for compass pose and in turn use it as a preparation for arm balances like eka pada koundinyasana.

Forward Bending Without Hunching Your Back

Does your back hunch up while doing seated forward bend? Learn to unhunch it and how to stretch your hamstrings (as opposed to your back.)

Forward Bending Yoga Poses

Yoga forward bends includes forwards bends for the hips and spine. Forward bends for the hips include both bent and straight straight positions.

Hamstring Stretching Standing Poses

Arm Strengthening Standing Forward Bends

Strengthen your hands, your arms, glutes and hamstrings with these standing forward bend variations.

Muscle Control For Standing Forward Bends

Improving hamstring flexibility in Padangusthasana, Padahastasana and other Standing forward bends

Pyramd Pose, Hamstring Strengthening And Stretching

Parsvottanasana can be done without the hands in reverse prayer. You can then focus on relaxing your hamstrings so that you can stretch them in this standing forward bending yoga pose.

Pyramid Pose, Muscle Control Options

Pyramid pose is a straight knee asymmetrical standing pose that can be used to stretch, and strengthen, the hamstrings.

Pyramid Pose, Pushing The Hips Back

How do you get even foot pressure on both feet in parsvottanasana or pyramid pose? Does it matter?

Reverse Prayer Yoga Pose (Parsvottanasana)

Getting your hands in reverse prayer yoga pose (parsvottanasana) while bending forwards is difficult. Some simple muscle control can be used for both.

Standing Forward Bend

The standing forward bend yoga pose can be used to stretch or strengthen the hamstrings and glutes. It can also be used to stretch and strengthen the calves and as a balance exercise.


Inverted Yoga Poses

The first step when doing inverted yoga poses isn't to try balancing, but to create a stable foundation and to get used to being upside down gradually. With comfort and a stable foundation you can then work towards balancing without the aid of a wall.

Dolphin Yoga Pose

Suggestions for preparing the shoulders and then adjusting the shoulders (and arms) in Dolphin Yoga Pose.

Pincha Mayurasana

Learn how to balance on your forearms in the yoga position called pincha mayurasana. Make it easier by stretching your shoulders with Spiderman Wall Stretch and Rack Pose.


L Shaped Handstand Against A Wall

Handstand is a an upside balance pose. Use L shaped handstand to get used to being upside down and to practice kicking up. Also use it to get used to using your hands to feel your balance pont.

Handstand, Balancing

You can do a handstand against the wall but you can't pull your feet off of the wall to balance. Learn how to peel your feet off so that you are balancing in handstand.

Handstand, Jumping Into It

Having trouble jumping into handstand with feet together from downward facing dog? Learn why it can help to get your shoulders ahead of your wrists. And how to use your legs to drive your pelvis forwards and up.

Handstand, Scissor Kicking

When kicking up into handstand with control and grace the most essential element is using your legs (off course) but once you've learned that, direct your awareness so that you can kick up with minimal effort and maximal grace.

Handstand, Stabilizing Your Elbows

Two key body elements that may make doing handstands easier and more pleasurable are the knees and the elbows. It's not so much about the joints as the single joint muscles that work on these joints that make controlling your body easier.

Handstand, Straight Leg Lift

Having difficulty lifting into handstand (let alone with grace and poise)? Learn how to shift your weight, set up your shoulders, and use your spinal erectors and mula bandha to make floating upwards an actual possibility instead of a distant dream.

Handstand, Yoga Alignment Options

What is proper yoga alignment for handstand? Why not learn to feel and control your shoulders and ribcage so that you can learn to feel when your body is best aligned.


Headstand, Creating Stability

Stability is a key factor in a lot of yoga poses. Learn about creating stability and staying balanced in headstand yoga pose.

Headstand, Straight Leg Lift

How to lift into a yoga headstand with legs straight? This article shows you the steps and what to focus on to stay balanced.

Heasdstand, Getting Used To Being Upside Down

This is a step-by-step introduction on how to do a headstand. It shows how to set up neck and shoulders and how to get comfortable being upside down in bound yoga headstand.

Tripod Headstand

The wider base of tripod headstand makes it a relatively easy type of headstand compared to bound headstand. It can also place less stress on the neck, particularly if you lean forwards so that the hands bear as much weight as the head.

Inversions-Shoulderstand And Plough

Shoulderstand Using A Wall

Learn how to control your body easily in shoulderstand using a wall to help you get up. This option is also great as a leadup or followup to restorative yoga poses using a wall.

Plough Pose

Have trouble getting into plough pose? Practice a controlled back roll to strengthen your abs and work on your balance.

Shoulderstand, Rolling For Balance

In shoulerstand (salamba sarvangasana) use your rhomboids to pull your shoulder blades together so that your ribcage lifts away from the floor. Reduce neck stress by balancing first on shoulders and elbows. Then you can slowly shift your weight towards your head if you like.

Kneeling And Virasana

Kneeling Yoga Poses

Tips for working towards kneeling yoga poses and semi-kneeling postures.

Reclining Half Hero Yoga Pose

Reclining half hero yoga pose, eka pada supta virasana, is a gravity assisted quadriceps stretch with several variations. Some simple adjustments can be used to help keep the knee down and create room for the hip.

Virasana (Hero Pose)

Virasana or hero pose is a kneeling yoga posture that can be used as a quadriceps stretch. It can also be used as a lying quadriceps stretch (supta virasana).


Double Pigeon Glute Stretch

Double pigeon yoga pose can be used to stretch the glutes. For a full range glute stretch you can lean forwards or backwards or reach to the side.

Low Pigeon Pose

Low Pigeon Pose

Yoga Pigeon Pose

For beginners one of the most important actions in yoga pigeon pose is learning to use the front leg to help support the pelvis.

Prone Poses

Prone Yoga Poses

Belly down and prone yoga poses can be used to strengthen as well as stretch (and increase flexibility) of the front and back of your body, shoulders and hips.

Seated Poses

Boat Pose

Some tips for making yoga boat pose more doable while still strenthening abs and hip flexors.

Bound Angle Pose

Bound angle pose can be used to stretch the adductors or inner thighs.

Easy Cross Leg Poses

Cross leg poses offer a simple way to twist and bend the spine and stretch the hips and shoulders. They can also be used for strengthening.

Easy Seated Forward Bend

Use easy seated forward bend (legs crossed) to practice feeling your pelvis as you tilt it forwards. You can also use it to stretch your hips. Make you spine feel long in this pose by reaching your ribs away from your pelvis.

Hurdlers Stretch

Keeping your knee safe in hurdlers stretch while internally rotating your shin, stretching your hamstrings and groin.

Janusirsasana A

Create space in your hip joint to make stretching your hamstring easier in Janu Sirsasana A. Add weight to the pose by lifitng your arms and reaching them forwards.

Janusirsasana B

Janu Sirsasana B is literally a pain in the butt. You position your perineum on top of your heel. You can use it as a prep for lotus pose because it uses body weight to close the knee joint. To make it easier on your knee support your weight with your arms and slowly lower down.

Janusirsasana C

One simple modification for janu sirsasana c is to turn the foot out 90 degrees. Here are some simple foot preparations that could also be substituted for the pose while helping you to work towards it.

Seated Yoga Poses

This sequence of seated yoga poses includes lotus and virasana variations, janu sirsasana and marichyasana variations as well as more basic seated poses like bound angle, pigeon and seated forward bend.

Wide Leg Seated Forward Bend

Upavistha konasana or seated wide leg forward bend, is one of the easier seated hamstring stretches. While you could use this yoga pose to work towards the splits, if you keep your legs 90 degrees apart or closer then you can use it as a prep for more challenging hamstring stretches.

Wide Leg Seated Forward Bend, Hamstring Control

Seated wide leg forward bend is an easy way of stretching tight hamstrings. You can add weight and deepen the stretch by lifting your arms and reaching them forwards. It can also be used to stretch the adductors is the legs are widened.

Side Bending

Seated Side Bend

Seated side bend can be used to stretch the quads. With one or both legs straight it can also be used to stretch the hamstrings. In either case it can also be used to stretch the side of the body, including the waist, the ribcage and even the shoulders.

Side Bending The Spine

When side bending the spine, both in isolation and in the context of yoga poses, you can focus on the short side of the side bend to make the side bend easier to feel.

Side Bends

Standing and seated yoga pose side bends for strengthening and stretching the side of the spine, hips and shoulders.

Side Stretching Yoga Poses

Some simple standing and seated yoga pose side stretches for stretching the sides of the waist and in some cases the sides of the hips.

Standing Side Bend

Standing side bend yoga pose can be used to stretch the side of your spine (ribcage and waist) and hips. It can also be used to strengthen them.


Splits, Creating A Strong Foundation

For people who can't do them, splits are one of the stretches that we can aspire towards. You can work towards splits first by using your arms to support your body, and then learning to use your legs to support your body even as you gradually go deeper.

Splits, Using Your Arms

Part of relaxing your legs to go deeper in hanumanasana or splits is using your arms to support the weight of your body.

Splits, Working On The Hip Flexors

These hip flexor stretches open up the fronts of the hips and can be used as a preparation for front to back splits. Bent knee hip stretches can be used to focus on rectus fermoris.

Standing On One Foot (And Balancing)

Eagle Yoga Pose

Eagle yoga pose combines balancing on one leg with hip flexibility and shoulder stretching. To make eagle pose easier to learn and you can focus on the leg crossing element in isolation. Then you can intergrate the arms.

Squats, Learning The Pistol Squat

Some simple exercises so that you can work towards the pistol squat gradually.

Tree Pose, Finding Balance

One of the challenges of yoga tree pose is staying balanced. Another challenge is that one side may be easier than the other.

Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana

Some intelligent options for working towads the Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana set of ashtanga yoga poses. You could also call these the lazy options.

Warrior 3

Practice balancing on one foot in warrior 3. Lift your leg higher by tilting your pelvis forwards and bending your spine backwards. Improve awareness and coordination by feeling your pelvis and keeping it level.

Standing Poses

8 Reasons To Do Standing Yoga Poses

8 Reasons to do standing yoga poses. With a clear cut purpose, it's easy to do standing yoga poses in a way to support that purpose.

Standing Yoga Poses

For students with limited flexibility, standing yoga poses can be used to gradually improve strength, flexibility and body awareness.

Basic Hip Adjustments For Standing Yoga Poses

To protect your hips it can help to learn some basic hip adjustments for standing yoga poses. The better you can feel your hips, the easier it is to protect them.

Standing Poses With Both Knees Bent

Body Weight Squat

How do you learn the body weight safely? How do you work towards this pose even if you aren't sure if you are capable of doing it.

Squats, Doing Body Weight Squats Intelligently

Body Weight Squats are great for building leg and back strength and creating heat. Learn how to do them intelligently.

Squats, Squatting Deeply

Some tips for learning how to do deep squats (without weight). The first tip is on how to stay balanced while squatting.


A step-by-step guide to operating your body effectively in this bent knee standing yoga pose.

Utkatasana (Chair Pose)

Do you experience knee pain while doing chair yoga pose? Here are some suggestions to alleviate knee pain. You can also use chair pose as an excuse to practice squatting.

Standing Poses With Knees Straight

Triangle Pose

Work on hip stability, foot and leg control with triangle yoga pose. Strengthen the obliques.

Triangle Pose (Utthita Trikonasana)

Strengthening the legs and waist with Utthita trikonasana yoga pose as well as tips for grabbing the toe (and options for not grabbing the big toe.)

Yoga Mountain Pose

Mountain pose can be used as a proprioception exercise to improve foot awareness, spinal awareness and balance.

Tadasana, Mountain Pose

Description: Tadasana, or Mountain pose, is an upright standing yoga pose. It can be used as the starting pose for a yoga practice, as a resting pose and it can be thought of as a datum or reference, the pose you return to after exploring other standing poses.

Standing Poses With One Knee Bent

Side Angle Pose

Side angle pose can be used to lengthen the side of the body, strengthen the abs and or stretch the hip extensor muscles. It can also be used to practice activating the serratus anterior muscle.

Warrior 1 And Utkatasana

Touching your hands together over your head in virabhadrasana.

Warrior 1 And Warrior 2

In warrior 1 and warrior 2 learn how to form a stable base with your legs while reaching your arms either upwards or outwards.

Warrior 1, Getting Deeper

Warrior 1 offers a nice opportunity for exploring muscle control actions for different parts of your body, including your hips, spine, and shoulders and even how to use your feet to make it easier to square your hips to the front.

Warrior 2

In warrior 2 it easy to forget about your back arm because you are looking at your front arm. Stay aware and focus on feeling your back arm and reach it away from you. Make both arms feel long.

Warrior 1, Stretching The Sartorius

Understanding how the sartorius functions makes it easy to see how warrrior 1 can be used as a sartorius stretch. Learn more about how the sartorius functions as a hip flexor, knee flexor and shin rotator and how you can use this understanding to exercise your sartorius muscles.

Supine Poses

Supine Yoga Poses

Supine yoga poses including bridge, wheel pose, supine bound angle, big toe pose variation, and preparations for wheel pose, plow pose and shoulderstand.

Yoga Poses Using A Wall

If you are feeling tired but still want to practice yoga then you could start with these restorative yoga poses using a wall. Using the wall to help support your body you may find that you feel refreshed enough to continue with a more energetic yoga practice afterwards.


Bharadvajasana Seated Twist

Bharadvajasana uses the lotus and hero foot positions and includes a twist for the spine. Use it to cool down or to release your low back.

Revolving Triangle, Stretching The Legs And Waist

Revolved triangle can be used as a strengthening pose for the legs, waist and even the arms.

Revolving Triangle, Twisting The Rib Cage

Parivrtta trikonasana can be challenging. Make it easier by giving yourself a checklist of things to do while you are in the pose. Instead of thinking about how much you dislike the pose, you can then get on with doing it.

Seated Twist, Using Your Spinal Erectors

Spice up your seated twist by activating and relaxing your spinal erectors. Practice activating your multifidus and rotatores. Then add you abs.

Standing Twist, Activating Your Hips

This standing spinal twist includes activating the hips so that the spinal muscles have a stable foundation from which to more effectively twist the spine.

Twisting Poses

Twisting poses: Passive, assisted and active twists for the ribcage and spine. Passive twists use gravity, assisted twists use the arms while active twists use the abs and intercostals.

Published: 2021 08 21
Updated: 2023 03 24
Clearly defined poses, exercises and stretches for improving stability, body awareness and flexibility.
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