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The Art of Stretching; an ode to Hanumanasana

by Frankie Culpin

Hanumanasana or Splits Pose may seem more appropriately called Hamstringsasana to many, especially as we tend to focus primarily on the front leg. We shouldn’t forget the range of motion required in the fronts of the hips or fronts of the thighs however, but while I’ve been preparing for teaching a workshop structured around this Monkey God Pose, I’ve been thinking a lot about the backs of my legs.

When I first started yoga I felt really inflexible and I think most people can relate to feeling like their hamstrings were holding them back from being able to ‘do yoga’ well. My knees were bent in Downward Facing Dog and my heels were high and my standing forward fold or Uttanasana more closely resembled the half-way lift of Ardha Uttanasana. I honestly couldn’t get my feet to touch the floor in Plough Pose or Halasana for what felt like decades. And then there were the seated forward folds...I tried to pride myself on keeping my...

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