Forward Extensions

Maha Mudra (Great Seal)

Level: Intermediate

Maha = great, mighty, strong, abundant. Mudra = a seal, any instrument used for sealing or stamping.

Organizing the pose

    • Come into Dandasana (Staff Pose).
    • As for Siddhasana (Accomplished Pose), take hold of the inner right thigh with the right hand just above the knee and drag the right foot in, keeping the right leg completely soft and passive and letting the arm do all the work.
    • Take hold of the right ankle and draw the right heel in to the right groin. At the same time, roll the ankle out to turn the top of the foot and shin down to the floor. The big toe should be in towards the right thigh and the left thigh should be at least at a 90° angle and ideally at a an angle greater than 90°.
    (• Alternatively, if this is not attainable, bring the foot into the thigh and have the leg in Baddha Konasana.)
    • If the knee does not go all the way down to the floor, support it with a blanket or block.
    • Turn the trunk to face out over the left leg.
    • Take hold of the big toe of the extended leg.
    • Inhale and lift the sides of the trunk, dropping the chin into the notch of the collar bones.
    • Hold this position as you exhale.
    • Inhale and hold the breath for several moments.
    • Exhale and release, returning to Dandasana (Staff Pose).
    • Repeat on the other side.