AKA full split. AKA (at least in my world) the Big Kahuna of groin and thigh openers, AKA the whole enchilada of hamstring flexibility poses.
Before attempting your hanumanasana, PLEASE work through a warm up that includes these four asanas: Janu Sirsasana (Head-to-Knee Forward Bend), Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend), Anjaneyasana (Low Lunge) and Eka Pada Rajakapotasana (Pigeon Pose). Spend at least 8 breaths in each pose and allow your mind to fully and completely tune into the sound of your breath.
Our second request is that you snag 2 blocks for this pose, even if you totally think “I don’t need blocks EVER.” Humor us and bring them along, just this once.
After your pigeon, shift to downward facing dog.
From down dog, stretch your right leg up into three legged dog, then take a big step forward to low lunge. Sink the hips nice a low, but keep your heart peaking up and over your right knee. Sway a bit from side to side, feeling for where you have space and even more importantly, where you need more space.
Give it five breaths.
After the fifth exhale, shift your hips back for runners stretch. Lift your heart and lengthen your spine before folding forward over your right leg. Stay for five breaths. Pay attention to where you tend to hold tension through the hamstrings and hips in both legs; you’ll need both to work equally hard when the time comes for full split.
When you’re ready, come back into a low lunge. Tuck the left toes and lift your left knee, then press back into your downward facing dog.
Peddle the feet for a few breaths. Check in with yourself. Feel what, if anything, has changed through the right side body.
Go through the same prep on the left side. Try not to compare your left side to your right side; it’s a conversation that almost never leads to enlightenment (just kidding, sort of).
Let the legs meet back up in down dog and breath there for a minute before attempting your full hanumanasana.
Now let’s do it!
Begin in low lunge with right foot forward and hands on blocks. Release your left knee to the ground. Walk your hands back, with the blocks, as you reach hips back toward left heel and lengthen your right leg back out to a runner’s stretch. Take a full inhale and a deep exhale. Breath in again; as you exhale, slide your right heel 6 inches forward. Stay for an inhale, then slide your left leg 6 inches back as you exhale.
Continue with the process, sliding the legs forward and back, until you find your edge. If you are inches from the ground, slide one block under your front thigh. Ground down into the block and length your crown up to the sky. Breathe here at least 5 deep breaths.
Come out of the pose slowly and repeat on the other side.
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