The Utthan Pristhasana, also known as Lizard Pose, stretches the hips, hamstrings, quadriceps and strengthens the leg and inner thighs muscles.
The Utthan Pristhasana is derived from the Sanskrit name, which is made up of three words — Utthan + Pristha + Asana:
- “Utthan” = “stretch out”
- “Pristha” = “back of the body or page of a book”
- “Asana” = “pose or posture”
The upper body of lizards is very flexible, and hence the back of the body in this posture looks like a stretched lizard. And the practice of the same is said to bring about equal flexibility and flexibility in the back and the various muscles involved.
Benefits of Utthan Pristhasana (Lizard Pose)
The physical and mental benefits of this pose are listed below:
- Physical Benefits:
- Strengthens the hamstring and quadriceps muscles
- Opens the hips, groins, hamstrings, and hip flexors
- Tones the chest, shoulders, hips, and gluteus maximus muscles
- Improves the flexibility
- Helps boost energy in the body
- Activate the reproductive system
- Stimulates the internal organs
- Deep stretches the lower abdomen, including the pelvic area
- Reduce symptoms related to menopause
- Energize the spine
- Reduces the excess fat around the belly (lower abdomen)
- Mental Benefits:
- Calms the mind
- Reduces the stress
- Enhances the confidence
Utthan Pristhasana (Lizard Pose) Practice Guide
- Begin by creating Downward Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana) on a yoga mat.
- Place your right foot forward between your hands.
- To make the feet a little wider than the shoulders, move the heel-toe towards the edge of the yoga mat.
- Let the hips settle forward and down.
- Now slowly walk the hands forward until they come down on the forearms.
- Keep your forearms on the floor. Beginners can use a block, and keep their forearm on the block.
- Open your chest, lengthen your spine.
- Draw the shoulder blades together, rounding out the back.
- To move to the inner hip and thigh area of the right leg, bring the right knee towards the midline.
- You can either lower your left knee or raise your left knee, keeping your leg active.
- Look straight or at the tip of the nose.
- Hold this position for 30 to 60 seconds.
- Repeat the process from the opposite side.
- Practicing this yoga posture at least 3 times (from both the sides) will give better results.
Precautions and contraindications
There are some important points to keep in mind while practicing Gecko Pose (Lizard Pose) to avoid further damage to the muscles or ligaments.
There are some precautions and contraindications to keep in mind while practicing the pose, which are explained below:
Knee or hip injury
When the person is injured, it is always best to avoid the pose for a certain period of time, and seek instruction from an expert to recover from the injury.
Weak shoulder joint or forearm
In Utthan Pristhasana (Gecko Pose), the body balances on the shoulders and forearms while going into a low lunge. The pressure on the shoulders and forearms is intense, making it difficult for a person with weak shoulders, and therefore it is best to go slow under the guidance of a yoga teacher/instructor while practicing this pose.
Lower back pain
During the practice of Lizard Pose, the tension in the lower back is excessive, there is a deep stretch in the hips and there is also a deep stretch in the inner thighs. These stretches put pressure on the lower back, as well as try to balance the body on the forearms in this low lunge, which leads to more unwanted strain on the lower back muscles, leading to discomfort, and therefore best to avoid.
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