Utka means fierce and powerful. The Utkatasana is a powerful posture that increases heat in the body. The Muladhara, Svadhisthana, and Manipura chakras are strongly activated in this pose.
Benefits of Utkatasana
- Builds digestive fire which aids in digestion and massages the abdominal organs.
- Teaches us to hinge at the hip flexors.
- Develops strength in the legs and core.
- Uses deep core muscles to create space between our hips and our ribcage.
- Avoid cueing your students to practice chair pose as though their back is against a wall. Chair pose should teach us to hinge from the hip crease. This allows us to keep neutral spine and have less tension in the back.
- Use the support of a wall if you suffer from knee or lower back pain.
- Low back or hip pain.
- Start in mountain pose with your feet either together or 6 inches apart.
- Bend your knees, hinge from the hip crease and allow your seat to stick out behind you.
- Make sure the knees travel right over the feet.
- Take particular care that the knees and ankles do not roll inward.
- Feel your deep abdominal muscles engage further as you sit down into an imaginary chair.
- Keep a neutral spine – Avoid tucking the tailbone or trying to keep your back straight as though against a wall.
- Make sure the lower ribcage stays connected to the abdominals (the lower ribs should not stick out).
- Focus on lengthening in the waist.
- Feel a natural curve in the back of the neck and that your shoulders relaxed.
- For more of a challenge lift the arms so that the arms are in line with the torso.
- Find a perfect point of balance between the muscles on the front and the back sides of your body. Rest into this point of balance.
- Feel the muscles of your legs hugging the bones.