Utkata Konasana: June Yoga Pose of the Month


Opens chest, inner thighs while strengthening back, core and thighs.

Goddess Pose (Sanskrit: Utkata Konasana)

  • Begin in Mountain at the front of your mat. Step your left foot back as if you were moving into High Lunge. Turn your entire body to the left turning toes out to corners of mat. You are now positioned to the long side of your mat. Feet are at a 45 degree angle (heels in and toes out) and legs lengthened. (There are other ways to approach and you don't have to use a mat - get creative!).

  • Place hands on hips creases and have spine tall. Take a deep breath in. On the exhale, bend knees so that they are positioned over ankles and not dropping in. Make sure you’re engaging inner thighs. If legs aren’t positioned at 90 degrees, that’s fine. You just need to make sure that your knees are properly lined up so that if legs were at 90 degrees, they would be over ankles.
  • Anchor all four corners of your feet into mat. Engage your belly in towards spine with tailbone reaching down preventing an unnatural sway in the lower back. Crown of the head is reaching tall.
  • Bring your arms up towards sky in a wide V-shape with palms facing forward. Bend your elbows at a 90 degree bend so that fingers are pointing up and fingers apart and active and wrists straight.
  • Note: You may bring movement into this pose by lengthening legs and arms at the same time as you inhale (Star Pose) and on the exhale, move into Goddess.

Namaste – The light within me honors the grace and wisdom within you.


About Author

Celeste Cooper-Peel, MA, MCHES, E-RYT, CWHC, CYT

Wellness Manager

Celeste has been in the science, health and wellness field over twenty years. As a chemist, she conducted research which brought her into the mindset of proactive wellness and prevention. After receiving her Masters in Health Education from East Carolina University, she ventured into the mind/body world receiving training in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and Yoga. Shortly after, she received the 2003 Wellness in the Workplace Award for a large health system in the state of Virginia. In 2004, Celeste joined SAS Institute, Inc. and continues to be passionate about all things wellness. She enjoys collaborating with team members, teaching, presenting and nurturing healthy lifestyle changes. She believes that every day is a learning opportunity and creates opportunities that reflect active learning, being curious and forward thinking. Celeste is a published author, the wife of a fun-loving husband, mother of a college freshman, "professional" front porch meditator and loves to play in the dirt . She is a nationally Master Certified Health Education Specialist (MCHES), an Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher (E-RYT) with the National Yoga Alliance, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Instructor, Certified Wellness and Health Coach (CWHC), Certified Yin-Yang Yoga and Mindfulness Meditation Instructor and Certified Yoga Therapist (CYT). She has also received advanced certificates in Integrative and Functional Nutrition and additional trainings with The Institute for Functional Medicine. Follow @ccooperpeel on Twitter and Instagram.

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