Instructor: Sarah N.
Sarah has completed an intensive yoga teacher training program in Pune, India at the BKS Iyengar Yoga Institute. She has been inspired to continue practicing yoga for life.

Garland Pose: Step-by-Step Instructions


The Garland Pose (Malasana) is excellent for relieving back pain while stretching the ankles and groins.

Step by Step Pose Information Benefits

Malasana

(Pronounced as "MAH-LAHS-anna")

Mala is a Sanskrit word that means "garland." Here, your arms form a garland around your knees. In Hindu culture, to garland a person is to show them honor and respect.

How to do Garland Pose

Step One

Squat on your yoga mat while keeping your feet together. Press the soles of your feet completely down into the mat without letting the heels come up. If your heels will not stay down, then place a folded yoga blanket under your heels for support. Raise your buttocks up off the floor. As your feet stay together, spread your knees apart wider than your torso and lean slightly forward.

Step Two

As you exhale, bend forward from the waist and place your palms on the mat in front of you. Lean forward enough so that the fronts of your knees rest against the backs of your armpits.

Step Three

Now stretch your arms around your legs so that you can clasp your hands or fingers together behind your back. If you cannot reach far enough to grab your fingers, then take a yoga belt and grab onto it with both hands behind your back. Gradually, you can pull your fingers closer together while pulling the yoga belt between your hands.

Step Four

Stretch your head, neck and chest forward and up as you gaze at the ceiling. Then exhale and let your forehead rest on the mat in front of you. If you want to go deeper in the pose, you can bring your hands down to grab the backs of your ankles as you pull your forehead closer to your toes on the mat.

Step Five

Stay in this posture for 30 seconds or up to a minute according to your capacity. Inhale to come out of the posture. Follow these steps in reverse to come out of the pose gently and lie back on the floor.

Beginner's Tip:

If you cannot comfortably squat on the floor, then sit in a chair instead with your feet on the floor. Scoot your sitting bones to the front of the chair's seat. Your knees should be right above your ankles. Spread your feet about 2 feet apart. Now bend forward from your waist and lean your torso as far forward as you can between your thighs.

Garland Pose Information

Sanskrit Name:

Malasana

Pose Level:

Level 1

Contraindications and Cautions:

Recent lower back or knee injuries

Garland Pose Benefits

  • Stretches the groins and relieves lower backaches
  • Tones the abdomen

Next Pose:

Triangle Pose

9 styles | 152 poses

Beginner Yoga Poses

Bharadvaja's Twist Pose
Big Toe Pose
Boat Pose
Bound Angle Pose
Bow Pose
Bridge Pose
Camel Pose
Cat Pose
Chair Pose
Child's Pose
Cobra Pose
Corpse Pose
Cow Pose
Cow Face Pose
Crow Pose
Dolphin Plank Pose
Downward Dog Pose
Eagle Pose
Eight Angle Pose
Extended Hand to Big Toe Pose
Extended Puppy Pose
Extended Side Angle Pose
Firefly Pose
Fish Pose
Garland Pose
Half Frog Pose
Half Lord of the Fishes Pose
Half Moon Pose
Yoga Handstand
Happy Baby Pose
Head To Knee Pose
High Lunge Pose
Legs Up The Wall Pose
Locust Pose
Lotus Pose
Shoulder Pressing Pose
Low Lunge Pose
Monkey Pose
Mountain Pose
Noose Pose
Plank Pose
Plow Pose
Sage Koundinya I Pose
Sage Marichi's Pose
Reclining Bound Angle Pose
Reclining Hand-to-Big-Toe Pose
Revolved Triangle Pose
Revolved Head to Knee Pose
Reclining Hero Pose
Scale Pose
Side Reclining Leg Lift Pose
Peacock Pose
Pyramid Pose
Crescent Lunge Pose
Heron Pose
Hero Pose
Feathered Peacock Pose
Staff Pose
Seated Forward Bend Pose
Four Limbed Staff Pose
Revolved Side Angle Pose
Wild Thing Pose
Side Crow Pose
Side Plank Pose
Sphinx Pose
Supported Headstand (Sirsasana)
Tree Pose
Standing Split
Supported Shoulderstand
Standing Half Forward Bend
Triangle Pose
Upward Plank Pose
Upward Facing Two Foot Staff Pose
Wheel Pose
Upward Salute Pose
Upward Facing Dog Pose
Warrior I Pose
Warrior II Pose
Warrior III Pose
Wide-Angle Seated Forward Bend
Easy Pose
Gate Pose
Wide Legged Forward Fold
Dancer Pose
One-Legged King Pigeon Pose
One-Legged King Pigeon Pose II
Marichi's Pose
Fire Log Pose
Standing Forward Bend
Pose Dedicated to the Sage Koundinya II

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