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  • Writer's pictureAllyssa Whitehouse

Exploring the Benefits and Alignment of Triangle Pose: A Guide to Trikonasana

Updated: Apr 8

Triangle Pose, or Utthita Trikonasana in Sanskrit, is a foundational asana in yoga practice that offers a multitude of benefits for the body, mind, and spirit. Its name is derived from the Sanskrit words "utthita," meaning extended, "trikona," meaning triangle, and "asana," meaning posture. This dynamic pose engages various muscle groups while promoting balance, stability, and flexibility. In this guide, we'll delve into the significance of Triangle Pose, its alignment principles, modifications, and the props that can enhance the practice.

Benefits of Triangle Pose:

Strengthens the Legs: Triangle Pose actively engages the quadriceps, hamstrings, and calves, promoting strength and endurance in the lower body.

Improves Flexibility: By stretching the spine, hips, hamstrings, and groins, this asana enhances overall flexibility, alleviating stiffness and promoting greater range of motion.

Opens the Chest and Shoulders: The extended arm in Triangle Pose facilitates the opening of the chest and shoulders, counteracting the effects of hunching over and promoting better posture.

Enhances Balance and Stability: Balancing on one leg while extending the torso and arms requires concentration and steadiness, improving balance and proprioception.

Stimulates Digestion: The twisting action of Triangle Pose massages the abdominal organs, aiding in digestion and promoting detoxification.

Calms the Mind: As with many yoga poses, the combination of breath awareness and physical movement in Triangle Pose helps calm the mind, reduce stress, and enhance mental clarity.

Alignment Principles for Triangle Pose:

  1. Start in Mountain Pose (Tadasana): Begin standing tall with your feet hip-width apart, arms relaxed by your sides.

  2. Step your feet wide apart: Open your legs about 3-4 feet apart, ensuring that the outer edges of your feet are parallel to each other.

  3. Align the Feet: Pivot your right foot out 90 degrees and turn your left foot slightly inwards to maintain stability.

  4. Engage the Core: Draw your navel in towards your spine to support the lower back and stabilize the pelvis.

  5. Extend the Torso: As you inhale, lengthen your spine, and on the exhale, hinge at the hip to extend your torso towards the right side.

  6. Lower into the Pose: Keep your torso extended as you lower your right hand down towards your shin, ankle, or the floor, while reaching your left arm up towards the sky.

  7. Maintain a Neutral Neck: Gaze either straight ahead or up towards your left fingertips, depending on your comfort and neck mobility.

  8. Keep the Shoulders Stacked: Ensure that your shoulders are stacked vertically over each other, avoiding collapsing into the bottom shoulder.

  9. Activate the Legs: Press firmly into the outer edge of your left foot while engaging the inner thigh to maintain stability.

  10. Breathe: Take deep, steady breaths, expanding the ribcage with each inhale and relaxing into the pose with each exhale.

Modifications and Props:

Using a Block: Place a yoga block on the outside of your front foot and bring the floor closer to provide support for your hand if reaching the floor is challenging.

Bend the Front Knee: if you have tight hamstrings or hip flexors, you can bend the front knee slightly to alleviate strain and facilitate better alignment for the entire body.

Using a Wall: Practice Triangle pose with your back against a wall to ensure proper alignment of the torso and hips while providing support and stability for the rest of the body.

Chair Variation: For individuals with balance issues or limited mobility, perform Triangle pose with your front hand resting on a chair seat or back for support.

Strap Assistance: If reaching your bottom hand to the floor is difficult, use a yoga strap around your front foot to extend your reach and maintain alignment.

Triangle Pose is not only a foundational yoga posture but also a powerful tool for enhancing strength, flexibility, and mental focus. By incorporating the principles of alignment and exploring modifications and props tailored to individual needs, practitioners can reap the myriad benefits of this transformative asana. Whether you're a seasoned yogi or just beginning your yoga journey, Triangle Pose offers a pathway to greater balance, stability, and well-being on and off the mat.

Feel free to check out Triangle step by step in the video below!

Love & Gratitude


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