December 21, 2015 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

Editor’s note:  Rachel is on maternity leave, spending time with young Nova Joy.  While she is gone, we are happy to bring you this yoga pose by Lindsay Lee.

I always joke with my students that Pigeon Pose is one of the ultimate signs that you know you’ve made it to the cool-down portion of a yoga class. This deep pose helps to open the hip flexor muscles, relieve sciatic nerve tension and low back pain, and, by practicing regularly, it allows you to connect to the center of your creativity.

  • Begin in a tabletop position with the hips aligned with the knees and the shoulders stacked on top of the palms.
  • From tabletop, inhale deeply and slide the right knee forward so that it comes behind the right wrist. The shin should come no further than a 45-degree angle.
  • Exhale and gently slide the left leg behind you, flexing the right toes to engage the right leg, which helps to support the knee.
  • Keep the palms, or fingertips, pressing into the ground as you keep the chest open, the crown of the head lifted, and the hips square.
  • Maintain steady breathing. Make a pillow using your forearms and rest the torso and forehead on the arms.
  • Breathe deeply in the pose for at least five reps.
  • If resting the torso, slowly place palms on the ground and lift the chest and head. To come out of the pose, inhale and bring the left knee forward, then exhale to bring the right knee back into tabletop position.  Repeat on the opposite side.

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