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Pose of the week: Chair Pose – Utkatasana

By Ashley Michelle

Chair Pose – Utkatasana (OOT-kah -TAHS-anna) Utkata means powerful

A powerfully, fierce pose.

While in a class, or if you want to try this pose at home, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Begin by standing in Mountain Pose. You can choose to have the feet hip width apart or bring the two big toes to touch leaving about an inch gap between the heels.

  • Draw your inner thighs towards each other.

  • Once connected to your breath, find an inhale to rise your arms up, shoulder width apart over head, palms facing each other. Draw the shoulders down the back body away from the ears. Feel as if your heart and chest area is open and shining up towards the sky.

  • As you exhale, begin to bend your knees while drawing your sit bones towards the earth. Envision yourself getting ready to sit into a chair.

  • Keep your spine long as you continue to reach your fingertips up towards the sky.

  • Explore what it feels like to hug the belly towards the back body and see if you can activate in the rib cage area and hug that in too.

  • Remember to keep your focus fixed on something out in front of you that is not moving and really gain control of your breath. Equal inhales. Equal exhales.

  • Hold this pose as long as you feel comfortable. If you’re squatting down too much and you’re finding it difficult to stay in the shape, try rising out of your chair a bit.

  • When ready to come out of the pose, find an inhale and push into the feet as you begin to straighten in the knees, rising back up to standing Mountain Pose. Let the arms float back down to your sides on your exhale.

Jen Vince demonstrates Chair Pose

Possible Physical Benefits

  • Stimulates the digestive system

  • Opens the chest area

  • Strengths the lower back, quads, hamstrings, arms, shoulders- full body experience!

Possible Mental Benefits

  • Can help create mental focus

  • Great feelings of willpower and dedication

  • May relieve stress

Last week: Child's Pose - Balasana

Next week:

*Photos taken at The Spiritual Spa

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