Iyengar's difficulty rating: 16* out of 60*
Note: due to a technical mixup, we didn't end up taking a picture of the final form of Iyengar's Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana! The pictures above are of a prep pose achieved by following steps 1-4 below. Steps 5 and beyond will guide you towards the final form.
- Stand in Tadasana.
- Raise your R leg, bend your R knee, and hold your R big toe between your thumb and fore and middle fingers on the R hand.
- Rest your L hand on your L hip. Take two breaths.
- Stretch your R leg forward while resisting by pulling back with your arm.
- Then wrap both hands around your R heel and lift your leg higher.
- Keeping your leg lifting, bow forward and rest your head, then nose, then chin on your R shin.
- Take a few deep breaths, then return to Tadasana.
- Iyengar looks much more relaxed than I do! This pose is strenuous for me this early in a sequence. I often need more time and warmth for my leg muscles to release.