Reclining Spinal Twist

Benefits

  • Stretches the IT Band, outer hips, glutes, piriformis, back, abs, obliques, chest, shoulders and neck.
  • Increases spinal mobility.
  • Releases compression at the lower back.
  • Relaxes the body and calms the mind.

Therapeutic

  • Can help to alleviate upper, lower back and neck pain.
  • Relieves stress.

Skill Level

  • Beginner

Category

  • Twist
  • Spinal Mobility

Yoga 15 Series

Instructions

  • Lie on your back and hug your knees into your chest.
  • Lower your left leg to the mat and squeeze your right knee into your chest.
  • Bring both arms out in a T, palms facing down.
  • Hook your right foot behind your left inner thigh and gently guide your right knee across your body, down towards the mat, as far as is comfortable.
  • Look to the right and try to keep both shoulders flat to the mat. 
  • Stay in the pose for 5-10 deep breaths, in and out through your nose.
  • Take a deep breath in. Exhale, come back to centre and switch sides. 

Modifications

  • If your knee does not come all the way down to the mat, you can rest it on a cushion so that you can relax fully into the pose. 

Variations

Reclining Spinal Twist

2-Knee Reclining Spinal Twist is a gentler and more accessible variation of the pose

Kneedown Twist

Reclining Knee-Down Twist intensifies the stretch in the outer hip and IT Band

  • Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet flat on the mat.
  • Straighten your right leg up to the sky and press through your heel. Bring your right ankle to your left knee and drop the inside of your left ankle to the mat. Gently lower your left knee down with the right foot still in place. 
  • Look to the left and stay here for 2-5 minutes. 
  • Come back to centre and switch sides.
Reclining Spinal Twist

Eagle Legs deepens the twist at the lower back 

  • Lie on your back with both feet in the air. Cross your left knee in front of your right knee and if you can, wrap your left toes around the back of your right ankle as you would in Eagle pose.
  • Gently lower both knees to the left and turn your head to the right.

Contraindications

  • Avoid this pose if you have a knee or hip injury.