Vatayana means a horse. The pose resembles a horse’s face hence the name.

Technique

  1. Sit on the floor, and place the left foot at the root of the right thigh in half Padmasana.
  2. Place the hands on the floor by the side of the hips. Exhale, raise the trunk off the floor and place the top of the left knee on the floor. Place the right foot near the bent left knee and keep the right thigh parallel to the floor.
  3. Stretch the pelvis forward, keep the left thigh perpendicular to the floor, raise the hands, straighten the back and balance the body. Do not stoop forward while maintaining the balance, but keep the back erect.
  4. Bend the elbows and raise the arms to the level of the chest. Place the back of the upper right arm near the elbow on the front of the upper left arm above the elbow joint. Entwine the forearms round one another and join the palms. Hold this position for about 30 seconds with normal breathing.
  5. Release the arms, sit on the floor and straighten the legs.
  6. Repeat the pose on the other side. Here, place the right foot at the root of the left thigh, place the left foot near the bent right knee on the floor and entwine the arms in front of the chest so that the left arm is over the right near the elbow joint, and balance, keeping the left thigh parallel to the floor. Maintain the pose for an equal length of time on both sides. Then relee the pose and relax on the floor.
  7. In the beginning, it will be difficult to balance and the knees will be painful. With practice the pain disappears and the balance is achieved.

Effects

In this pose the hip joints receive proper circulation of the blood and minor deformity in the hips and thighs is corrected. The pose is also good for stiffness in the sacroiliac region.