Step by Step
Sit on one edge of a thickly-folded blanket, knees bent, feet on the floor. Lightly shrug your shoulders up, strongly roll the heads of your upper arm bones back, and press the bottom tips of your shoulder blades into your back.
Slide your left foot under your right leg to the outside of your right hip, and lay the outer leg on the floor. Then, stack your right leg on top of the left. Be sure the right ankle is outside the left knee (so the sole is perpendicular to the floor).
If you have more flexibility in the hips, you can slide your left shin forward directly below the right to increase the challenge; otherwise, keep the left heel beside the right hip. If you’re tight in the hips, you may find that bringing the ankle to the outer knee is difficult or uncomfortable. In thisÂ case, simply sit with your shins crossed in Sukhasana (Easy Pose).
Press through your heels and spread your toes. Keeping your front torso long, exhale and fold forward from your groins. Be sure not to round forward from your belly: Keep the space between your pubis and navel long. Lay your hands on the floor in front of your shins.
As you inhale, notice how your torso rises slightly; when it does, lengthen from your pubis to your sternum. Then on the next exhalation, fold deeper.
Hold 1 minute or more. Inhale the torso upright and uncross your legs to come out of the pose. Repeat for the same length of time with the left leg on top.
Source: Yoga Journal, About.com, BV Yoga Naples Fla.