One-legged Bridge Pose, or Eka Pada Setubandha Sarvangasana, is an intermediate backbend which strengthens multiple parts of the body, placing a special emphasis on the abdomen. At the same time, the pose makes other muscles work including the biceps, the triceps, the gluteus muscles, the calves muscles and the hamstrings. Furthermore, One-legged Bridge Pose supports healthy breathing patterns and improves circulation in the body, helping to relieve anxiety symptoms.
1.) Begin lying flat on your back with your knees bent
2.) Lift your hips up slowly and keep your hips square. Press your shoulders in to the mat
3.) Bind your hands underneath your back and wiggle your shoulders so your arms are under your back. This will open your chest more
4.) Continue to press off the mat with your feet, engaging your glutes and core
5.) Now lift one leg up to the sky, squeezing your glutes
6.) Lower back down to the mat, repeat on opposite side
One-legged Bridge Pose actively engages the abdominal muscles which gives them strength. It makes the pose a great preparation for more advanced positions demanding core stamina.
Besides the abdominal muscles, the One-legged Bridge Pose also happens to train more muscles of the body including the biceps, the triceps, the gluteus muscles, the calves muscles and the hamstrings - it truly does tone practically the whole body.
One-legged Bridge Pose demands great focus and awareness to hold its needed balance hence it nurtures awareness and consciousness in the practitioner. Thanks to that, they can concentrate on their present surroundings and circumstances, keeping in mind who they truly are.
One-legged Bridge Pose activates Vata and Crown Chakra at the same time, advocating for one’s intellectualism and rationale. It nurtures one’s ability to assess the situation from different angles and perspectives.
To deepen the opening of the shoulders and the back, this variation is perfect. Starting from the standard One-legged Bridge Pose, bring the lifted leg back onto the ground and place it analogically to the second leg. From there, grab each ankle by one hand, rounding the torso as needed and bringing it closer in the direction of the shins. Adjust the level of shoulder and back opening to your own needs and comfort. Keep gazing up at the ceiling.
This variation is for those who would like to lengthen the leg muscles in a different way. Starting from the standard One-legged Bridge Pose, bend the knee of the extended leg so that the shin forms a 45-degree angle with the thigh of the second leg. Lightly and without pressure, place the foot of the leg on above the knee of the second leg. Unclasp the hands and bring the arms to the sides of the trunk. Breathe and maintain the balance and the stretch.