Eagle pose, or Garudasana (pronounced gah-rue-dahs-anna), requires a combination of balance, strength, and flexibility. Providing a great stretch for your shoulders, upper back, and legs, garudasana creates space in your body physically and mentally cultivates focus and concentration. To sustain the posture, you must give it your full attention, drawing your mind to a single point of focus.
⭐️ Philosophy & Origin
Although commonly known as Eagle pose, the word “garuda” in Sanskrit refers to a great mythical bird, one with a golden body, white face, and red wings. The king of all birds, Garuda is associated with Lord Vishnu, who serves as the preserver and protector of humans and creation.
⭐️ Physical Benefits
Strengthens the thighs, ankles, and calves.
Stretches the shoulders, arms, and upper back.
Improves balance and coordination.
Helps flush the lymphatic system.
⭐️ Energetic Benefits
Develops focus and concentration (dhyana).
Helps to remove stagnant energy and increase the flow of prana (our life force energy).
⭐️ Step by Step
- From standing, bend both of your knees. Raise your right foot off the ground, bending your standing leg slightly. Cross your right thigh over your left, reaching your right foot back with toes pointing down. Place your right toes on the ground or ’hook’ the top of your right foot at the back of the left calf.
- Distribute the weight equally in your standing foot to help create a solid foundation for the pose.
- Cross your left elbow over your right and bend both elbows to bring forearms perpendicular to the ground. Rest the backs of your hands together or cross at the wrists to bring your palms together.
- Lift your elbows up to shoulder height and draw them away from you to increase the stretch through your upper back, scapulae (shoulder blades), and shoulders.
- Stay in Garudasana for 20 to 30 seconds practicing Ujjai breathing. Release the posture and return to standing and repeat on the other side.