Using our legs is essential to everyday life. We use our legs to walk around every day to get from point A to point B. Maybe you are someone who does many activities to keep your legs strong and healthy, with running and biking. But maybe you are someone who is stuck behind a computer in an office for most of the day. Whichever person you may be, here are 5 poses that will help you sculpt your leg muscles for stronger legs so that you can take on your day!
Chair Pose (Utkatasana)
Stand in Tadasana. Inhale bend the knees and raise your arms up. Interlace your fingers, push thepalms up towards the sky. Exhale, tuck your ribs inward and keep your tailbone down. Try to bring your thighs as parallel to the floor as possible. Keep your gaze at your hands. Hold here between 5 – 10 breaths.
Extended hand to big toe pose (Utthita Hasta Padangustasana)
From Tadasana, inhale and lift your right leg up. If possible, grab the big toe with your index finger, middle finger and thumb. If you have tight hamstrings, hold a strap that is looped around the sole of your right foot. Ground the standing left leg and firm the thigh muscles. Straighten the lifted right leg as much as you can with your left hand on your hips. Stand tall and keep the chest open, do not collapse the chest down.
If you are stable, swing the right leg out to the side. Breathe steadily, concentrate and hold for 5 breaths. Inhale swing the right leg back to center.
If you are feeling strong, release the bind that you have on theright leg and keep the leg lifted for another 5 breaths. Keep both hands on the hips with your spine straight. Inhale come back to center and exhale lower the right leg down. Repeat on the left side.
Extended Side Angle Pose (Utthita Parsvakonasana)
From Downward Facing Dog, inhale and step forward with the right foot. Bring your right elbow to meet your right knee, which should be directly over your right ankle. Exhale, bring your left arm straight up and diagonal towards the ceiling and turn the left palm of your hand to face towards your head. Your body should look like it is making a diagonal line from the top of your left hand down to your left heel. Turn your head to look at the left arm. Try to lengthen along both sides of your body, not only the left side. Keep the legs and arms activated while keeping your core engaged. Stay here for 5 breaths. Repeat on the left side.
Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)
Lie supine on the floor. If necessary, you may place a thick folded blanket under your shoulders to protect your neck. Bend on your knees and bring the heels as close as you can to your sitting bones. Inhale, press the inner edge of your feet and arms to the floor and lift the hips up toward the sky. Engage the legs and buttocks, keeping the knees hips width distance apart. Interlace the fingers behind the back and firm the outer arms. Hold between 5 – 10 breaths.
Extended Triangle Pose (Utthita Trikonasana)
From Tadasana, exhale, separate your feet 3.5 feet apart. Raise your arms parallel to the floor and reach them out actively to the sides, palms down. Turn your left foot slightly to the right and your right foot to a 90 degree angle. Align the right heel with the left left, with your left heel at a 45 degree angle. Firm your thighs and keep your legs and kneecaps activated. Exhale and extend your torso to the right, bending from the hip joint (not the waist). Inhale lift your left arm up actively towards the ceiling, in line with the tops of your shoulders. Look up at the left hand, gazing softly at the left thumb. Hold here for 5 breaths. Repeat on the left side.
How do you feel? Remember to keep these postures in your daily practice to feel the effects of strengthening your leg muscles. We hope you enjoyed this post. Stay tuned for more yoga from Shambhala Barcelona. <3