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The Outdoor Athlete Book by Courtenay and Doug Schurman



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More Training Info > Triangle Pose

Triangle Pose

This stretch, taken from yoga, is great for the chest and shoulders, obliques, lats and lower back, and hamstrings. If you are looking for some yoga stretches but do not have access to a yoga class or video tape, try printing out this page and reading through the description provided. Also check out all the rest of our previously launched stretches.

GETTING STARTED:

To perform the Triangle Pose, it might be useful to first try it up against a wall. Lean against the wall with one hip, and stand with feet very wide, one set of toes pointing directly away from the wall and the other set of toes parallel to the wall, as though your feet create an "L". Extend arms out to the sides.


MOVING INTO POSITION:

Start by slowly reaching one arm down the front leg (the one with toes parallel to the wall) and the other reaching up toward the ceiling, keeping both shoulders back against the wall as long as possible, in order to prevent turning the hips which would diminish the stretch in the chest and shoulders. It may be easier to remember how to do this stretch if you try keeping your knuckles against the wall at all times. Both legs should be straight but not locked out.


VARIATIONS ON A THEME:

With practice, you may eventually feel comfortable doing this without the wall behind you for support. Another option (a progression of the exercise) is to do it with front leg bent, as shown in the third picture, to the left.


For a stretch such as this, stop if you feel any discomfort or pain, and only go as far as you can without strain. You can also use a foam core roller, broom stick, or bench to provide a little assistance at waist or shin level, especially if it is hard to reach down to your shins. To increase the stretch, take a deep inhale and then gradually let your body relax a little deeper into the stretch. Hold for anywhere from 20 seconds to 2 minutes, and then repeat to the other side. With time and practice, you may experience one or more of the following desired effects: 1) shoulders and chest muscles may get a good stretch so that upper back and neck soreness goes away; 2) lower back aches may dissipate; and 3) hamstring stiffness may go away.

Yoga Videos

Yoga & Sculpting DVD
70 min Yoga + 85 min strength more

Yoga Focus DVD
30 min strength, 20 stretch more



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