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Parivrtta Trikonasana
The Revolved Triangle Pose

Releasing the Pelvis

Next, turn your attention to the position of your pelvis. The pelvis acts as a hinge between the legs and torso. Holding the weight of the torso in its basin, the pelvis also helps protects the spine by absorbing shock from the legs. If pelvic movement is restricted, you lose that buoyancy, placing stress on your joints and undermining support for your torso. A tight pelvis can also lead to a variety of undesirable compensatory muscle patterns in the upper body.

Tension in the abdominal muscles can exacerbate rigidity in the pelvic region. To counteract this tension, place your hands on your hips, breathe quietly, and allow each exhalation to help relax your abdomen until the interior of the pelvis seems liquid. Then explore the placement of your pelvis by gently rotating it forward, backward, and side to side; imagine the liquid shifting with the each action, like oil in a bowl, until it feels level. With the pelvis in this neutral position, you will be able to stand tall without being rigid. In fact, your pelvis will float lightly and comfortably, rooted in the legs and feet. When your pelvis is free, the spine is far more likely to be pliable and light, especially as your internal strength continues to grow. To add strength in the base of the spine and pelvis, move your tailbone toward the floor as if a weight were attached to the coccyx. This action is subtler than tucking your pelvis; it’s more a letting go than an action. Though the primary sensation is one of release, you will begin to feel a response in the interior of the back pelvis as abdominal muscles engage and stabilize the lower spine. Secure now in a grounded base, your upper body will instinctively begin to let go of chronic holding patterns. You can speed the process along by gently moving the spine, which really is quite pliable. To do this, first spend a minute simply feeling the rhythm of your breath; then deliberately direct that pulse into your spinal muscles. Can you feel the massage? Gradually your spine will feel lighter, as though it is growing from your pelvis like a vine. Grounding your legs and pelvis so your spine can emerge upward with suppleness instead of rigidity is crucial as you begin to explore standing twists.

Parivrtta Trikonasana
Revolved Triangle Pose

» Demonstrations

» Intro

» Finding Your Ground

» Releasing the Pelvis

» Testing Your Roots

» Squaring Your Hips

• Tones legs and hips
• Strengthens upper back
• Improves spinal flexibility
• Massages organs and regulates their function
• Nourishes spinal discs

• Back muscle spasms
• Herniated discs
• Sciatica
• Positional vertigo


© 2001 Barbara Benagh
Reprinted from Yoga Journal