Pigeon pose is one of the most popular ‘hip opening’ postures that yoga students love to hang out in. Meanwhile, it’s unclear given all that we know and are still learning about stretching whether more flexibility gained through exploring passive range of motion (aka hanging out in a stretch) is even useful.
At the same time, in a yoga room where our equipment is often limited to blankets, belts and blocks, it can be challenging to configure poses in a way that makes the pose more active so that we can build strength alongside our flexibility. Enter Carrier Pigeon! I’ve changed the orientation of the legs for a more 90/90 arrangement and added a rolled blanket at the end of the long levers of the arms thereby exponentially increasing the load that the blanket provides for challenging the hips, but also the muscles of the back. In this way, we can use a pigeon-esque shape to train flexibility and strength – combined abilities which many are now referring to as mobility. Think of mobility as flexibility with motor control or flexibility that you have active control over. Big bonus!