Hurdler Pose or Eka Pada Koundinyasana II

Hurdler Pose - Eka Pada Koundinyasana II
Hurdler Pose - Eka Pada Koundinyasana II. Ann Pizer

The hurdler yoga pose, or Eka Pada Koundinyasana II, improves balance and core strength, stretches the hamstrings and groins, and strengthens the arms.

Type of Pose: Arm Balance

Also Known As: One Legged Pose Dedicated to the Sage Koundinya II, Albatross


1. There are many ways to get into this pose. One of the simplest is from lizard pose.

2. Begin in lizard with the left leg forward. Lift your elbows off the floor by straightening your arms.

3. Thread your left arm under your left leg and place your palm flat on the outside of your left foot. Try to get your left knee just over your left shoulder if possible. 

4. Bend both arms into a chaturanga position with the upper arms parallel to the floor.

5. Begin to straighten your left leg, bringing your left thigh onto the shelf created by your upper arm. Lift your left toes from the floor.

6. Shift your weight forward into your arms so that you can lift the right foot from the floor behind you, engaging your right thigh to keep that leg raised and straight.

7. Keep the gaze on the floor just in front of you. You don't need to crank your neck up, but also don't let your head drop since its weight can tip you forward.

8. Try to hold the posture for 5 breaths.

9. Come down and try the other side.

Alternate Instructions

1. Another way to enter the pose is from a downward facing dog split. This method gives the pose a bit more forward momentum. It just depends on which you prefer.

2. Start in down dog split with the left leg lifted. In one motion, swing the left leg forward bringing the knee toward your left triceps as you bend both arms to a chaturanga position. Your left thigh will land on your left upper arm.

3. Use your momentum to bring the right foot off the floor but you need be in enough control that your head doesn't come down to the floor.

4. Straighten both legs as much as possible.

Beginners Tips

1. Take some time to get used to the feeling of supporting the front leg on your arm before trying to lift the back leg. If you tuck your right arm under your body so that your elbow comes roughly to your right hip, it will be easier to lift the back leg.

2. Practice other arm balances like crow pose in preparation. Once you have a feeling for your center of gravity in basic arm balances, more advanced ones become accessible.

3. These plank variations will help you strengthen your core and practice bringing your knee to your triceps.

Advanced Variations

1. If you have been practicing with the right elbow tucked under your body for awhile, work on bringing it out so that it hugs your right side instead.

2. Try jumping back to chaturanga.

Was this page helpful?