• How to do Marichasana B

    Marichasana B is a seated yoga posture found in the Ashtanga yoga tradition. The name Marichasana B comes from Marichi, the name of a Hindu sage and asana (posture).

    Benefits of Marichasana B

    The Marichasana B yoga posture offers a variety of benefits to practitioners. 

    • stretches and strengthens the spine
    • releases the hips and groin
    • stimulates and detoxifies the abdominal organs
    • improves digestion and elimination
    • strengthening the intercostal muscles by stretching them, allowing for more effective breathing.
    • improves posture
    • opens the shoulders

    Contraindications for Marichasana B

    The contraindications for Marichasana B are few but important. People with high blood pressure or heart problems should avoid Marichasana B. Also, avoid the posture if you have a knee or ankle injury.

    How to modify Marichasana B

    Start seated on the floor on a folded blanket.

    Close your left knee joint and drop it out to the side.

    Place your left foot under your right thigh.

    Bend the right knee up toward the chest. Your right foot is in front of your left foot.

    In this modified position, you can gently bend forward.

    Move the right knee to the outside of the chest.

    Draw your navel in and exhale and fold.

    Wrap your shoulder around the right knee and your left arm around your back on the left side so you can bind your hands behind your back. If you can’t reach, use a strap to complete the bind.

    Inhale prepare.

    Exhale fold.

    Stay for five breathes and then do the pose on the other side.

    Full version of Marichasana B

    Do not attempt this if you don’t have a good half lotus pose. Continue to do the modified version of the pose until you’re comfortable with your half lotus.

    Start seated on the floor.

    Close your left knee joint and drop it out to the side. Bring your foot up into the crease of your hip on your right side.

    Bend the right knee up toward your chest.

    Lean your body weight forward, picking your pelvis up off the ground.

    Drop your chest forward and down to the inside of the right thigh.

    Bring your right arm around the right leg and your left arm around on your left side to bind your hands behind your back.

    Inhale prepare.

    Exhale fold with your forearm touching the ground.

    Stay for five breathes and then do the pose on the other side.

    Marichasana B can be challenging, but with practice, it will become easier and more enjoyable over time. Watch this video with Kino for more detail about the pose.

  • How to do Marichyasana B

    Marichyasana B of the Ashtanga Primary Series is one of what I call “Birthday Cake Poses”. It involves specific ingredients that must be added in the proper order, at the appropriate time, for the recipe to work. The process is essential to honor the intention of the posture.

    The first ingredient is the lotus posture. Without lotus, it is really just a version of Marichyasana A. So take your time with your lotus position, finding release in the hip, checking in with the knee, bringing that foot high across the other leg, heel positioned within the line of the pubic bone and belly button. Once you have a workable lotus – perfection is not required, just something that is not painful and gives you space to work the other leg – lean back into the hands so that you can draw the second leg up, heel to sit bone. This moment may reveal some resistance in the hip, acknowledge that and navigate a path through it. If the hip is not too intense, rock your weight forward and diagonally toward the lotus leg. Eventually you want to feel secure in this foundation, the thigh of the lotus leg and the foot of the other side, that sit bone lifted. This is the baking phase of our recipe. Settle into your foundation, sit with ease. If you are still holding on to the planet to avoid falling back, then work here for a while. Next take a forward fold over you lap, reaching around for the bind just as in Marichyasana A, first arm around the upright knee, the other tossed behind the back. Got the bind? Frosting! Lastly, enjoy your dessert, finishing with a deep fold, forehead or chin to the floor. Breathe.

    If you rush this posture, you may end up with some distorted version with no integrity. Step by step process draws your awareness to places of resistance and thus places to work. When the full expression is reached it will feel like it makes sense, you will feel ready for it. No hurry! And always honor injuries, especially in the knees. It is certainly acceptable, even encouraged, to modify the lotus during a time of injury.

    By Angelique Sandas


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