Asana: Pose or Posture
Half Moon Pose
1. Stand at the top of your mat in Mountain Pose with a block about on the outside of your right calf.
2. Step your left foot back about 3 ½ feet, open your hips to the long edge of your mat, and stretch your arms away from you so that they are parallel to the ground. With an exhalation, extend over your right leg and bring your right hand to the block, moving into Triangle Pose.
3. As you next exhale, lower your left hand to your left hip, look toward the ground, and step your left foot in about a foot as you slide the block forward about a foot. Let the right knee bend slightly here. With an inhalation, ground your right palm into the block and straighten your right leg as you lift your left leg so that it is horizontal to the ground.
4. Continue to breathe and let your chest rotate upwards, extending your left arm toward the ceiling. Hold for as long as comfortable, then repeat on the opposite side.
Tips: There is a tendency to turn the torso toward the ground when we look to our foot before stepping up. Be mindful to keep your torso open and your left shoulder back as you turn your gaze to the ground. This will allow you to feel the opening of the pose as you move into it. Having trouble maintaining balance in the pose? Try practicing with your back to a wall.
Benefits: strengthens and stretches the legs; brings flexibility into the hips; improves balance and confidence; calms the mind and improves concentration.