Siddhasana (Adept or Accomplished Pose)

Iyengar's difficulty rating: 1* out of 60*

Iyengar's Technique:

  1. Sit on the floor. Stretch your legs forward in front of you.
  2. Bend your L knee and hold your foot in your hands. Turn your knee out to the side as you place your foot on the floor with your heel at your perineum (near your groins, essentially) and the sole of your foot touching your opposite inner thigh.
  3. Bend your R knee and hold your foot in your hands. Place your R foot over your L ankle. Keep your R heel against your pubic bone.
  4. Place the sole of your R foot between the thigh and calf of your L leg (in other words, put your toes an the crease behind your opposite knee).
  5. "Do not rest the body on the heels."
  6. Stretch your arms straight and rest the backs of your palms or wrists on your knees, so that your palms face upwards and outwards. Join your thumbs and forefingers. Keep your other fingers extended.
  7. Remain here for as long as possible while keeping your back, neck, and head upright and your vision directed softly inward, as if you were gazing at the tip of your nose.
  8. Repeat the pose with the opposite cross of your legs.

Comparing Forms:

  • Iyengar has both of this shins resting on the floor. I cannot achieve this; it causes pain in my knee, so my top leg is hovering away from the ground somewhat. My inability to do this has to do with my ligaments but it also has to do with the range of motion in my hips. I am unable to abduct my thighs without externally rotating them much more than Mr. Iyengar is doing here.
  • Iyengar's scapulae are retracted. Mine are comfortably relaxed and protracted, making my back appear wider and the posture more spacious but less engaged and energized.