Pigeon Pose

Equipment
Mat

Purpose

Pigeon pose is a common yoga pose for both the piriformis muscle and the hip flexors. It is often used to help treat sciatica.

Set up

Start by laying on your stomach on a comfortable surface such as a yoga mat.

Movement

Inhale as you use your hands to press your chest and hips upward off of the floor. While you are here, bring your right knee up towards your chest and let it rest on the mat towards your right hand. Your foot should be positioned towards your left hand. Exhale as you lean your chest forward until you feel a stretch in your right hip. Hold for 30-60 seconds. Repeat 2-3 sets total on each side.

Tips

  • Try to maintain a steady breath with this stretch.
  • If you feel a strain on the knees while doing this exercise, flex your foot (toes upward towards the knee).
  • This can be an uncomfortable stretch as it involves moving into significant ranges of hip and knee range of motion. If you are unsure if this exercise is for you, please seek medical advice.
  • This exercise can also be performed by sitting in a chair, crossing one foot over the opposite knee, and then allowing your chest to lean forward over your legs. This is called a Seated Pigeon Pose.
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