fun pose friday: fallen angel

Greetings yogis! In this week’s Fun Pose Friday post we’ll break down:

Devaduuta Panna a.k.a. Fallen Angel

It is a beautiful  pose that reflects the image of an angel, fallen from a cloud, with head down to the ground and one foot pointing up, reaching toward the heavens.

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If you’ve seen Fallen Angel, it looks pretty tough, but what many people don’t realize is that if you can do side crow (or Parsva Bakasana), you’re half way to Fallen Angel. If you are unfamiliar with side crow though, then let’s start there.

Begin in a low squat facing the top of the mat and rotate your torso toward the long end of the mat. Begin snuggling upper arms over the thigh you are turned towards and bring your armpit as close to the top of the thigh as possible.  Then lower your hands and plant them on the mat, shoulder width apart, spreading your fingers out wide to create a solid base. Bend elbows to a ninety degree angle (think chatturanga), stacking the shoulders above the wrists and then lean over the arms and allow the triceps to support the weight of your knees. Engage the core and arm muscles to enable your feet to lift off the ground.

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If you’ve made it this far, congratulations you’ve gotten to side crow and are ready to move on to Fallen Angel!

To transition to Fallen Angel, slowly, with control, lower your cheek down to the mat with your head turned toward the top of the mat. Rotate hips so legs are perpendicular to the ground and feet are pointed up toward the ceiling. Then extend the leg further away from your head straight and point the toes of both feet. Hold for several breaths, attempting to find stillness and ease in the pose.

If you take a tumble (like me in the pic below), no worries, get right back up and try again!


I do want to also mention how poses look and feel in different bodies.  Don’t get hung up on what “it should look like.”  We are all different… and beautiful in our own way!

To come out of Fallen Angel, hug the top leg back down into your knee and rotate the hips so the legs are once again parallel with the ground. Then engage the arms and core to lift your head back up off the mat. Return the feet down to the mat and turn your torso to the front of your mat.

Follow these steps to try Fallen Angel on the other side.

Benefits of Fallen Angel include:

• Strengthens the arms, wrists, and core.

• Can improve balance.

For more tips on getting into Fallen Angel, check out this great tutorial from Rachel Brathen

Have a great weekend yogis! See you on the mat!