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Cobbler’s Pose: Benefits and steps

Whether you are young or old, you can experience lower back pain at any time. Yoga may help soothe the pain. Let us tell you all about Baddha Konasana or the Cobbler’s Pose to get relief from lower back pain.

Lower back pain affects the lower part of the spine that involve the nerves, muscles, or bones of the back. This painful condition may be because of overuse of the lower back muscles while working out or lifting heavy objects. Even sitting for long, sleeping in an uncomfortable position, or carrying a poorly fitting backpack can hurt your lower back. Your lower back pain can stem from anything. You can find relief by doing yoga. You just have to find the right yoga pose for it. Try to do Baddha Konasana or the Cobbler’s Pose to get relief from lower back pain.

What is Cobbler’s Pose or Baddha Konasana?

Baddha Konasana or the Cobbler’s Pose is a sitting yoga pose that involves bringing the soles of the feet together and allowing the knees to drop outward. It is like the sitting position of cobblers. Known for its ability to open the hips and stretch the inner thighs, it is a popular asana for meditation and relaxation, says yoga expert Dr Hansaji Yogendra.

A woman doing cobbler's pose
Cobbler’s pose is a sitting yoga pose. Image Courtesy: Adobe Stock

How does Cobbler’s Pose help with low back pain?

Yoga is an effective and safe intervention for chronic low back pain, as per a research published in the Journal of Orthopedics and Rheumatology in 2016. Baddha Konasana is one of the yoga poses helpful in managing lower back pain. Here’s how it helps:

  • The pose stretches the hip muscles, reducing tension and stiffness in the lower back.
  • By strengthening the lower abdomen and pelvic muscles, it supports better posture, which can relieve lower back pain.
  • It enhances the flexibility of the hips and thighs, which can reduce strain on the lower back.

Baddha Konasana has more health benefits like:

  • It provides an intense stretch for both the superficial and deep muscles of your thighs.
  • It helps release stiffness in your hip joints.
  • Strengthens your lower abdominal muscles.
  • Improves the overall flexibility of your legs.
  • Strengthens your groin muscles.
  • Improves blood circulation to your lower body.

If it is practiced during pregnancy, it can aid in labour by improving flexibility and strength in the pelvic region, says the expert.

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How to do Cobbler’s Pose?

This is a simple yet highly effective yoga asana which can be easily practiced by beginners. Here are the steps:

  • Begin by sitting on the yoga mat with your legs nicely stretched out in front of you. Ensure that your feet are together and your toes are pointing upwards. Keep your hands next to your body, and rest your palms on the mat.
  • Maintain a straight neck, with your chest pushed slightly forward. Keep your abdomen in a natural, relaxed contour, and draw your chin inward. Look straight ahead.
  • Gradually bring your legs closer to your body as you bend your knees outward. Bring the soles of your feet together, ensuring that they are touching.
  • Position your feet so that the toes point outward, and bring them close to your genital area, with the heels pressing towards your perineum. If you wish, clasp your feet with your hands so that the heels can come close to your body.
  • Once you are in the proper position, place your hands on your knees. Gently press your knees down towards the floor, encouraging a deeper stretch in your inner thighs and hips.
  • Hold this position for 1 to 2 minutes, maintaining a steady breathing pattern. Breathe deeply and slowly.
  • To come out of this pose, release your hands from your knees slowly and extend your legs back to the first step. Do it when your legs get fully stretched out in front of you.

When you do this asana, you should not allow your knees to lift, as this will reduce the stretch in the inner thighs and hips. So, keep your knees pressed down gently, says Dr Hansaji. Also, maintain a straight spine to avoid unnecessary strain on your lower back and to improve posture.

A woman having back pain before doing cobbler's pose
Do cobbler’s pose if you have mild lower back pain. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Who should avoid doing Cobbler’s Pose?

Cobbler’s Pose can be done by most people, but the following should avoid this asana.

  • People with severe arthritis, as this pose may increase pain and discomfort in the hip and knee joints.
  • Individuals with hip or knee injury should not do this yoga pose, as it can cause further injury.

Including Cobbler’s Pose or Baddha Konasana into your yoga practice can help provide relief from low back pain, especially if it is mild. But practice it carefully and with proper alignment to avoid injury.

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