Last updated: December 21, 2023

What Does Vatayanasana Mean?

Vatayanasana is an intermediate yoga pose that requires a great deal of flexibility and is part of the intermediate series of Ashtanga yoga. The name is derived from the Sanskrit vataya, meaning "horse," and asana, meaning "pose."

From tadasana (mountain pose), one foot is brought to the top of the other thigh in ardha padmasana (half lotus pose). The knee of the standing leg bends until the other knee reaches the floor and the body's weight is balanced. The arms rise with the forearms pointing upward, and wrap around each other so that one elbow crooks into the other. The arm on top should correspond with the foot that's bent in half lotus.

Vatayanasana is commonly referred to as horse pose in English.



Yogapedia Explains Vatayanasana

According to the teachings of Iyengar yoga, practicing vatayanasana can improve and support blood circulation in the hip joints and correct some small deformities and misalignments in the thighs and hips. It also strengthens the legs and knees, and improves balance, core awareness and focus.

In a spiritual practice, vatayanasana stimulates the svadisthana (spleen or sacral) chakra, the center of passion and pleasure that governs creativity and sexuality.

For beginners, this pose should be performed under the supervision of an experienced yoga teacher. It A recommended preparatory pose for vatayanasana is ardha baddha padmottanasana (half bound lotus pose).

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