Pose of the Week: Mandukasana (Frog Pose)

Mandukasana (pronounced man-doo-KAHS-uh-nuh), also commonly referred to as Frog Pose, gets its name from the Sanskrit word “manduka,” which means “frog.” The yogi performing this posture resembles a frog. Frog Pose is an easy and wonderful pose to open and stretch the hips, groins and inner thighs. Regular practice of Mandukasana also relieves stress, anxiety and mild depression. This pose aids in digestion and can alleviate cramping due to digestive issues and menstruation. Mandukasana also opens the chest and shoulders.

While performing Frog Pose can be very beneficial, it should be avoided if one has recent or chronic injury or inflammation to the knees, hips, legs or ankles. Likewise, those suffering from low back pain should avoid this posture.

How to perform Mandukasana:

  1. From a tabletop position, walk the knees out to the sides as wide as comfortable. Bring the ankles directly behind the knees with the feet turned out towards the side.
  2. Bring the elbows and forearms onto to the floor with the palms flat on the floor or with the palms pressed together.
  3. Slowly exhale pressing the hips backwards until a deep stretch in the hips and inner thighs can be felt.
  4. Breathe and hold for 3-6 breaths.
  5. To release: rock the hips forward and either bring the palms under the shoulders and press back up into a table top position or walk the arms forward lowering the hips and whole body flat on the floor.

Suggested modifications:

  • If the knees become uncomfortable, place padding under the knees.
  • If the neck is stiff, rest the forehead, not the chin, on the floor or on a bolster.
  • If prone to tingling in the hands when the arms are extended, move the hands wider apart or closer together. If that doesn’t help, do the pose with one arm at a time.
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Downward Facing Frog