Parshva means side or flank. Kona stands for angle. Thus this is the extended lateral extended angle pose.
- Stand in Tadasana. Inhale deeply and with a jump, spread the legs apart sideways 4 to 4.5 feet. Raise arms sideways in line with the shoulder, palms facing down. This is the same initial pose as the Utthita Trikonasana.
- While exhaling slowly, turn the right foot sideways to the right 90 degrees and left foot slightly right, keeping the left leg stretched out and tightened at the knee. Bend the right leg at the knee until the thigh and calf form a right angle and the right thigh is parallel to the floor.
- Place the right palm on the floor by side of the right foot, with the right arm pit covering and touching the outer side of the right knee. Stretch the left arm over the left ear. Keep the head up.
- Tighten the loins and stretch hamstrings. The chest, the hips and the legs should be aligned. To achieve this, move the chest up and back. Stretch every part of the body, concentrating on the back portion of the whole body, especially the spine. Stretch the spine until all the vertebrae, ribs move. You should feel the skin being stretched and pulled.
- Remain in this pose from half a minute to a minute, breathing deeply and evenly. Inhale and lift the right palm off the floor.
- Inhale, straighten the right lef and raise arms, coming back to initial position.
- Now, repeat all the above steps on the left side, while exhaling.
- Exhale and jump back to Tadasana.
Benefits of Utthita Parshvakonasana
- This asana tones up the ankles, knees and thighs.
- It corrects defects in calves, thighs and helps develop the core muscles.
- It relieves sciatic and arthritic pains.
- It increases bowel movements and helps digestion.