Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana: Steps and Benefits

Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana
Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana Image by yanalya on Freepik

Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana, also known as One-Legged King Pigeon Pose, is a challenging yet rewarding yoga asana that combines deep backbending with hip opening. This heart-opening pose is named after the majestic King Pigeon, symbolizing grace and strength. As a powerful posture in yoga, Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana offers numerous physical and emotional benefits, making it a popular choice among experienced yogis.


“Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana” is derived from Sanskrit, where “Eka” means one, “Pada” means foot or leg, “Raja” means king, and “Kapota” means pigeon. It translates to “One-Legged King Pigeon Pose.”

Steps to Perform Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana:

1. Begin by coming into a tabletop position with your hands and knees on the mat. Align your wrists directly under your shoulders and knees under your hips.

2. Slide your right knee forward between your hands. The right foot should be positioned near the left hip.

3. Extend your left leg straight back, keeping the hips level. Your left toes should be pointing directly back.

4. Inhale deeply and lift your chest, elongating your spine.

5. As you exhale, begin to hinge forward from your hips. Walk your hands forward until you can rest your forearms and forehead on the mat.

6. Allow your hips to settle down toward the mat, feeling a deep stretch in the right hip flexors and quadriceps.

7. Keep your gaze soft and your breath steady. Allow yourself to relax and surrender into the pose.

8. Hold the pose for several breaths, aiming to stay in the posture comfortably.

9. To release, gently walk your hands back, lifting your chest, and tuck your back toes under. Slide your right knee back and return to the tabletop position.

10. Repeat the pose on the other side, sliding the left knee forward and extending the right leg back.

Benefits of Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana:

1. Hip Flexor and Quadriceps Stretch: The pose deeply stretches the hip flexors and quadriceps, which can be beneficial for people with tight hips and thighs.

2. Improves Posture: Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana encourages proper spinal alignment and opens the chest, which can help improve posture.

3. Heart Opening: The backbending nature of the pose opens the chest and heart center, promoting feelings of joy and vulnerability.

4. Stimulates Abdominal Organs: The posture stimulates the abdominal organs, aiding digestion and promoting internal balance.

5. Emotional Release: Hip-opening poses like Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana are believed to store emotional tension. Practicing this pose may facilitate emotional release and create a sense of liberation.

6. Strengthens Core Muscles: The engagement of the core muscles during the pose helps build strength and stability.

7. Enhances Flexibility: Regular practice of this asana can lead to increased flexibility in the hips, thighs, and lower back.

Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana, the One-Legged King Pigeon Pose, is a transformative yoga posture that combines hip opening with backbending. Its physical benefits extend to emotional well-being, making it a valuable addition to a yoga practice. As with all yoga poses, it’s essential to practice with awareness and respect for your body’s limitations. With consistent practice and patience, Eka Pada Raja Kapotasana can lead to profound physical and emotional transformation on the mat and beyond.


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