Triangle Pose/Trikanasana

In the dialogue, Bikram teachers will tell you that Triangle pose “is the master posture of the series, perfect marriage between the heart and lungs.”  For me, triangle pose (or trikanasana) is the truth.  If I had too much to drink the night before, too much cheese the night before, no sleep the night before or didn’t drink enough water the day before, triangle pose will betray me.  When I’m ready for it, it’s invigorating.  When I’m not – I curse myself for walking in the room and thank Jesus when it is over.  Triangle pose has helped me find religion.

It seems a little over the top, but supposedly triangle pose improves every single bone, muscle, joint, tendon, and internal organ.  I will say, it is one of those poses that will always challenge you – after practicing on and off for four years I find something new to focus on every class.

In the pose, you want to make sure you’re sitting down low enough to open up your hips and pelvis. Your bent leg should look like an upside down ‘L’ in the mirror.  This part is never an issue for me.  Where I need the work is with the hip of my extended leg popping up.  I need to push that hip DOWN.  I need to stretch my arms rather than tilt my body when reaching for my toes.  I need to move that hand to 12 o’clock and put my chin on my shoulder.

I had ACL replacement surgery in 1998.  Getting out of triangle pose on my left side (the bad knee) was always hard for me.  I would have to brace myself to get up.  Recently, it occurred to me that I might be able to simply unwind my arms and windmill out of the pose.  I took a deep breath, gave it a shot and BOOM I did it!  It’s true of many things but we can so easily talk ourselves out of trying something.  But give it a shot, what’s the worst that could happen?  I make a fool of myself in Bikram – wouldn’t be the first or last time.


P.S. It’s day 6 of my 30-day squat challenge.  I think I may need to move up to the intermediate level.  I hate to say it, but this is easy.  Probably jinxed myself – tomorrow I’m supposed to do 40 counter balance box squats.

N.B. Ignore my form in the photo above – I am in the middle of Broadway on the lovely island of Manhattan.  Though no cars are anywhere near me, I was a still little nervous.


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