Teen Breathe

How to do the shoelace yoga pose

Shoelace Pose – Padukabandhini asana in Sanskrit, with paduka meaning footwear and bandhini meaning lace – is named for the way the legs loop and bend around each other, as laces do when you tie a bow. Read on for a brief guide to this popular yoga pose, including how to do it and the physical and mental health benefits of mastering the position.
WORDS: Dawattie Basdeo – magnificentmemagnificentyou.com

What are the health benefits of the shoelace yoga pose?

This pose supports hip mobility, works the muscles in the lower back, glutes and legs and stimulates the gallbladder and kidneys. It also helps to calm the mind.

How to do the shoelace yoga pose

Sit upright with your back straight and tall, your hips flat and square on the mat and your legs extended in front of you.

On an in-breath, bend your left knee, draw your foot towards you, lift it over your right leg and bring your left heel to touch the ground on the outside of your right hip.

On another in-breath, bend your right knee, sliding your heel to the outside of your left hip. Your left knee is stacked above your right knee – position them centrally between your hips. (If this is painful or uncomfortable, leave the right leg extended.)

Breathe here. Extend your spine upwards, face forwards, chest open, arms flowing alongside your torso as you gently hold your feet. Take a few breaths here. Yoga blocks, bolsters or folded blankets can be used as support where needed.

If you’d like to, you can add an optional forward fold here. Lower the upper torso from the hips so that your heart is over your interlaced legs. Use your arms to support your weight by resting your hands on the ground or on a yoga block. Hold for a few comfortable breaths then straighten up.

When you’re ready to come out of the pose, press through your hands and slowly roll up through your spine to an upright position. Place your hands slightly behind you, lean back and release your legs back to the original position extended on the ground in front of you. Repeat on the opposite side.

As with all physical activities, do not attempt if you have any medical or physical conditions that may be aggravated. If in doubt, talk to your doctor. Younger children should be supervised.

For more physical activities and yoga poses, read the latest issue of Teen Breathe magazine.