Eka Pada Setu Bandha Sarvangasana (Single Leg Bridge Pose in Shoulder Stand)

Single Leg Bridge Pose in Shoulder Stand
Level: Intermediate

Eka = one. Pada = a foot. Setu = bridge. Bandha = Lock or restraint. Sarva = whole, all, complete. Anga = limb.

If you are unable to bring the foot all the way to the floor, try dropping back to a chair, or take a blanket or two away.

Organizing the Pose

  1. Come into the pose from Eka Pada Sarvangasana (Single Leg Shoulder Stand).
  2. With the left leg raised and the right leg descended, drop the left leg down behind you. Start with the leg straight and bend it if you need to in order to bring it to the floor.
  3. Keep the hands high on the back.
  4. As you make the transition, widen and lift the back ribs towards the ceiling. Anchor the front of the armpits and the shoulders into the ground. Stretch the sides of the waist towards the head.
  5. Either stay there with the left leg bent or walk it away from you until straight.
  6. Hold the pose for 20 to 30 seconds.
  7. Swing the legs back up and return to Eka Pada Sarvangasana.
  8. Repeat on the second side.
  9. Either continue on with other Halasana (Plough Pose) or Sarvangasana variations, or exhale and come down, using the arms to control yourself as you roll down through the back.
  10. Slide off the blankets towards the head until the shoulders come to the floor and the hips are raised on the blankets. Rest there for a few breaths.
  11. Roll over onto the right side and press yourself up.

Practice Points

  • Reach the raised leg strongly up towards the ceiling.
  • Lengthen the sides of the waist towards the head.
  • Widen and lift the back ribs.
  • Roll the back of the armpit up towards the ceiling and the front down towards the head.
  • Soften, widen and ground the tops of the shoulders
  • Broaden the collarbones.
  • Soften and widen the chest, neck and throat.