Tight hips and yoga do not go hand-in-hand. There are many hip-openers in yoga, but Supta Baddha Konasana opens them up in a therapeutic way. It is a relaxing and calming posture that just soothes anyone physically and mentally. The posture is the reclined version of Baddha Konasana, the Butterfly Pose. Let’s take a look at the benefits of practicing the Reclined Butterfly Pose before we learn how to do it.

Supta Baddha Konasana Benefits

Supta Baddha Konasana
Supta Baddha Konasana

This recharging Asana has cool advantages. It

  • Opens and stretches the hip flexors, groins, and inner thighs
  • Relaxes the back
  • Soothes the spine
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Calms the agitated heart
  • Decreases muscle tension
  • Eases headaches
  • Alleviates fatigue and insomnia
  • Reduces stress and nervous tension
  • Improves energy
  • Increases the circulation in the lower abdomen
  • Improves digestion
  • Soothing during menstrual cycle
  • Opens the chest [If the hands rest at shoulder levels]
  • Activates Muladhara and Svadhisthana Chakras

Supta Baddha Konasana Steps

Reclined Bound Angle Pose, as it is also called, is pretty simple to learn and master. There are a couple of ways to get into the posture.

Method I

  1. Lie down on the back, stretching the legs out.
  2. Bend the knees and join the soles of the feet.
  3. Bring the soles as close to the groins as possible.
  4. Open the knees to either side, allowing them to fall close to the floor.
  5. Lift the head gently and rest it back to give enough space for the neck. Tuck the chin to the chest.
  6. Stretch out the arms beside the body. Alternatively, stretch the arms out at shoulder level. Bend the elbows and place the forearms perpendicular to the shoulders, fingertips pointing away from the body.
  7. Close the eyes and ease into the pose.
  8. Relax the face and eyebrows. Relax the tongue and shoulders.
  9. Hold the pose for three minutes at least to experience the deep stretch.
  10. To come out of the pose, join the knees and roll to the sides. Sit up and get into Balasana.

Method II

  1. Sit in Dandasana, the Staff Pose. Stretch the legs to the front, flexing the toes towards the body.
  2. Using the hands, lift the flesh from beneath the buttocks so that the sitting bones are resting on the mat.
  3. Bend the knees and join the soles of the feet.
  4. Let the knees fall to the sides.
  5. Bring the soles as close to the groins as possible.
  6. Inhale and resting the elbows on the floor.
  7. With the exhalation, gently recline back on the floor, supporting the body with the elbows.
  8. Once the body touches the floor, lift the head gently up and tuck the chin to the chest.
  9. Roll the shoulders back to rest them on the floor.
  10. Rest the palms as mentioned under Method I.
  11. Relax the facial muscles and tongue. Relax the shoulders.
  12. Hold the posture, breathing deeply, for at least three minutes.
  13. To come out of the pose, join the knees and roll to the sides. Sit up and get into Balasana.

Supta Baddha Konasana Contraindications

  • Knee injury
  • Lower back pain
  • Recent injury to the hips

Supta Baddha Konasana Variations

One can change the arms position in a couple of ways.

  • Place the arms on either side of the body, palms facing up.
  • Rest the palms on the knees, pressing them to fall closer to the floor.
  • Place the right arm on the lower abdomen and the left on the chest.
  • Stretch the arms out at shoulder level. Bend the elbow and extend the forearm perpendicular to the shoulders. Let the fingertips point away from the body.

Reclined Butterfly Pose Modifications

Supta Baddha Konasana Modifications
Supta Baddha Konasana Modifications

One can use straps, bolsters, and block to modify the posture and maintain safety during the practice.

Supta Baddha Konasana With Strap

Start by sitting in Dandasana. Join the soles of the feet, dropping the knees to the sides. Loop a strap around the lower waist. Allow the front portion of the strap to loop around the feet through their outer edges. Tighten the yoga strap as required. Gently recline back as outlined in Method II.

The belt will help to keep the soles of the feet together and assist the practitioner to go deeper into the posture.

Supta Baddha Konasana With Bolster   

Bolster works as a support for the lumbar spine, allowing the people who have restricted range of mobility to enjoy the Asana.

Place the bolster lengthwise or across the back. Follow steps 1 through 6 explained under Method II to get into the posture. Recline back on the bolster. Placing it lengthwise, right from the coccyx, will help to lengthen the spine. On the other hand, placing the bolster across the spine under the chest or lower back will support the back.

Supta Baddha Konasana With Blocks

There are different ways one can use blocks in this practice.

  • One can place a block under the scapular area [adjust the height of the block according to the desired intensity] for a deep heart opening experience.
  • Place another block under the head, while using a bolster crosswise or putting a block under the scapular area. The block will keep the neck safe from any sort of tension.
  • Blocks can also be placed under the knees to support them if they are dangling in the air.
  • To indulge in an intense energizing version, place a block beneath the pelvis and rest the sacrum on it. Rest the knees to the sides and press the soles against each other. [Adjust the height of the block to play with the intensity]

Reclined Bound Angle Preparatory Poses

  • Baddha Konasana
  • Supta Padangusthasana
  • Virasana
  • Vrksasana

Reclined Bound Angle Follow-up Poses

  • Gomukhasana
  • Malasana
  • Padmasana
  • Paschimottanasana
  • Balasana
  • All the seated twists
  • All the seated forward bends

Including a restorative pose like Supta Badda Konasana will calm us and relax us, ensuring a good night’s sleep.

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I’ve always been enthusiastic about discovering myself, the life and the people. I realize that I have to live in the present moment in order to do that better. This is the mindfulness. Yoga has become the part of my life for more than 5 years. I also completed my teacher training program (RYT 200, Yoga Alliance) and I wanted to share my experiences with everyone. I believe that the articles on YogaArt.com can help you reach out to the mindful state. Yoga is the Art of Mindfulness. Let's be present together. Namaste!

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