vatayanasana (horse face pose)

Image supply: Canva

Vatayanasna, a traditional pose from the Ashtanga yoga collection, appears like a mixture in look Garudasana (eagle pose) and Ardha Padmasana (half lotus pose). It's a balancing pose particularly aimed on the quads, glutes, and internal thigh muscle tissue.

It can be recognized by identify flying horse maintaining or Horse face pose.

The pose requires a substantial quantity of flexibility that’s already anchored within the physique. So due to the problem, it’s one center yoga posture.

Vatayanasana which means

Vatayana is named "horse" in Sanskrit and Asana means pose.

Alternatively, "Vata" in Sanskrit refers to air and "Yana" is a "vehicle". Here within the pose, nonetheless, the time period "Vatayana" means "flying horse". Hence it’s typically known as that flying horse maintaining.

In Vatayanasana the limbs type a form like a horse. If you observe the horse maintaining intimately you’ll find;

  • The folded knee within the half lotus (balancing knee) appears like a horse's nostril, and
  • The wrapped arms, head and chest space type a form like the highest half of a horse.

The complete determine of the pose makes a form like a horse's face; a horse about to fly.

Horse maintaining is about balancing the physique on one folded knee and one foot. This creates strain on the thighs, knees and ankles. Therefore, it strengthens the leg muscle tissue and knee joints.

Vatayanasana train handbook

flying horse keepingImage supply: Canva

Yoga grasp B.Okay.S Iyengar described horse maintaining in his e book "Light on Yoga". According to him;

In the start it will likely be tough to maintain your steadiness and your knees might be painful. With observe the ache disappears and equilibrium is achieved.

Light on yoga

Before beginning horse possession, undergo the next factors to observe safely and simply.


  1. Avoid training Vatayanasana throughout being pregnant, with sciatica or with intervertebral discs.
  2. Don't do it on an injured knee, hip, or ankle.
  3. People who’ve a hernia mustn’t observe it as it will probably make the ache worse.

Preparatory poses

How To Do Vatayanasana (Steps)

how to do vatayanasanaImage supply: Shutterstock

  1. Sit on the ground and place your left foot in your proper thigh close to the hip fold, i.e. H. half padmasana.
  2. Keep your palms by your sides and place your palms on the ground.
  3. Exhale and raise your torso off the ground.
  4. Touch the turned left knee on the ground.
  5. Bring your proper foot ahead and place your proper heel close to your left knee. Make positive your proper thigh stays parallel to the ground.
  6. Inhale, straighten your again, straighten your pelvis ahead, and lift your palms to chest stage.
  7. Bend your elbows and cross them in order that the precise elbow is within the bend of the left, i.e. H. The eagle pose like wrapped palms.
  8. Now wrap your forearms and join your palms collectively.
  9. Hold the pose for 30 seconds and maintain respiration.
  10. Release your arms and sit on the ground, straightening your legs.

Repeat the pose by altering the place of the foot and arms folded.


  • Perform the asana with the right alignment and proper posture.
  • Keep your hips aligned and pulled underneath you by compressing the sacroiliac joint.
  • Do it underneath skilled supervision.
  • Do it with the assistance of a companion to ease the pose and get further help at first.

Follow up poses

  • Eagle pose (Garudasana)
  • Half-bound lotus with standing ahead bend (Ardha Baddha Padmottanasana)

Modifications and props

Beginners who can not discover steadiness within the horse face pose can change the pose utilizing the props within the following modifications.

  1. With a chair Performing vatayanasana with a chair modifications the pose somewhat. Position a chair 6 inches in entrance of you.
  2. Stand on each knees and place one hand on the chair seat. Hold every foot with the opposite hand and pull it as much as attain your thigh. When you've discovered your steadiness, raise your hand off the chair and attain towards the ceiling.
  3. Put folded blanket underneath the knee – Before you bend the leg in a half lotus session, set a blanket underneath the knee to comfortably maintain and steadiness the posture.
  4. Do it with the assistance of a companion to ease the pose and get further help at first.


vatayanasana variation in prayer postureImage supply: Shutterstock

  1. Do the vatayanasana by not entangling your arms. Just put your palms in that Prayer posture and stand on one foot and one Knee.
  2. In this variation, as a substitute of bringing one heel to the opposite thigh, take it backwards. Then take the identical hand backwards and maintain your huge toe. The different foot lies on the ground with a parallel thigh.
  3. Parivrtta Vatayanasana – In this variant, Vatayanasana is carried out with the palms in a prayer place. Then the torso is rotated in direction of the standing foot, with the elbow of the alternate hand resting on his thigh. However, the skin elbow protrudes upward with the palms of the palms urgent one another.

Vatayanasana advantages

1. Increases flexibility

With common train, it releases the trapped rigidity from the muscle tissue. The stretches concerned within the pose are superior and supply extra flexibility to the muscle tissue.

2. Strengthens muscle tissue and bones

It will increase the endurance and stability of bones and muscle tissue. It ultimately makes the bones and muscle tissue stronger.

3. Improves blood circulation

The asana improves blood circulation within the decrease physique. In specific, it facilitates correct blood movement by the hip area.

4. Therapeutic impact

The actions related to the pose assist take away any stiffness within the physique and relieve joint ache. Thus, Vatayanasana has a therapeutic impact on arthritis.

5. Improves posture

The pose focuses on the decrease physique. The hips and legs specifically are deeply concerned within the pose. Practicing vatayanasana frequently may even enhance a slight asymmetry within the hips and legs. It brings the right posture.

6. Improves steadiness and focus

Vatayansana helps to enhance the power to pay attention. It requires a agency grip of steadiness, and because the physique is balanced in a single foot and knee, the facility of focus will increase.

Research has proven that vatayanasa supplies the practitioner with improved steadiness and focus.


Vatayanasana strengthens, improves and heals the physique. Its varied advantages show the potential of this asana. With the precise observe and strategy, anybody can profit from it.


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