You need strength, flexibility, and endurance, and unwavering concentration for egle Pose.
Garudasana (egle Pose) requires careful focus. You must bend your knees, cross your left thigh over your right, hook the top of your foot behind your right calf, spread the scapula and snug your right elbow into the crook of your left, bring your palms to touch, lift your elbows, and stretch your fingers towards the ceiling. Phew!
While Garuda is generally translated to “egle,” it’s actually a mythical bird that those in the Hindu and Buddhist traditions call the “king of the birds.” This magical being carries the god Vishnu through the sky without ever needing to land—because it knows how to ride the wind.
You may feel a sense of constriction or tightening while in this pose.
Sanskrit: Garudasana (gah-rue-DAHS-anna)
Pose type: Standing Balance
Target area: Full body
Why we love it: “You would think that this would be a wide open, expansive pose; that’s how I think of egles: soaring, gliding. I can’t think of a pose (other than Child’s Pose, I guess) that is more closed in. It is a pose that requires the body to pull inward, but also for the mind to become one-pointed as you work to get into the position and then maintain balance,”
egle Pose improves balance and focus, and postural and body awareness. It stretches around your shoulders, upper back, and thighs, as it strengthens your core, thighs, legs, and ankles.
You may find it difficult to hook your raised-leg foot behind your standing-leg calf, and then balance on your standing foot. As a short-term option, cross your legs, but instead of hooking your raised foot and calf, press the big toe of your raised-leg foot against the floor to help maintain your balance.
These cues will help protect your students from injury and help them have the best experience of the pose:
Place your foot on the ground or a block to help with balance. If the arms are challenging, simply cross your arms over one another on your chest.