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One Pose—Three Ways

After owning and directing Go Yoga in Williamsburg for 15 years, Lilia Mead recently joined The Three Jewels, in Manhattan. Honored to be in a new space, Mead is best known for her vinyasa style that infuses Iyengar, Ashtanga, and the best of the Jivamukti Yoga method. Here, she shows Triangle:

YogaCity NYC: What pose did you chose and why do you like it?

LM: I chose Trikonasana (Triangle Pose) as my asana to demonstrate because it is one

of my favorite postures and can easily be demonstrated in three different ways. It is a

basic pose that is easily taught to most beginners and basic-level students.

YCNYC: Describe the anatomy of the first and second pose and body parts engaged.

LM: The legs are separated approximately four feet apart so that the wrists are over the

ankles. As the front foot turns out 90 degrees, the back foot rotates in 30 degrees. There is an even extension through all four limbs and both sides of the waist while the spine remains vertical. On exhalation the torso extends out over the front thigh from the hip joint—not the waist—and, as the front hand moves down on the ankle, block, or ground, the top hand reaches up. The arms extend in one straight line and the back ribs and shoulder blades draw in. The legs are fiercely active, with knee caps lifted and quadriceps muscles engaged. Both elbows extend fully and the cervical spine rotates the head to face upward.

YCNYC: What is the overall effect of the third pose on the body, and what does this one

add to the understanding of the pose, and mind?

LM: The overall effect of this standing pose is to build strength and stability in the legs

while engaging the core and opening the chest and shoulders. In addition, the side-bending aspect helps to bring elongation to both sides of the waist. It also gives

extension and traction to the entire spine. Emotionally, the pose feels like a practice in

expansion, generosity, and of joyful effort.

To take class with Lilia Mead, you can visit her Monday-Friday at The Three Jewels or at 4pm on Thursdays for pranayana at the Jivamukti Yoga School.

If you would like to contribute to One Pose—Three Ways, contact Ann Votaw at with "Three Poses" in the subject line.

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