My constantly on-the-road life does a major number on my hips. My psoas is constantly talking trash from sitting too many hours on planes and at my computer as I blog and write my new book. This yoga posture is one of my favorite ways to stretch and relieve my tight psoas muscles. I've yet to find an official name for it, though. It's sometimes referred to as Wounded Warrior but is really more reminiscent of a variation on a Half Frog Pose (Ardha Bhekasana), so let's call it Tipsy Frog.
The shape and lift of the chest are what trigger the release of the back leg psoas. The higher you lift, the more intense it becomes. That’s why I’ve supplied two different variations to explore for happy hip flexors. You can also try forward folding in this pose—yin style—without the chest opener to simply make space in your hips. Enjoy.
Step 1: Start lying on your back. Draw your right knee tight into your chest. Relax your shoulders. Take 8 breaths.
Step 2: Drop your right knee over to the left into a twist. Keep your left leg straight and gently draw your outer right thigh down with your left hand. Drop the head of your right shoulder down toward the floor as far as feels comfortable. Take 8 breaths.
Step 3: Roll your weight onto your left side to flip onto your belly, keeping your right knee bent. Keep your left leg straight with the toes either curled under or flat on the floor, internally rotating your left rear leg. Align your right knee with your right hip, creating a 90-degree angle with your knee. Stay here or prop yourself up into a Sphinx position, bringing your forearms parallel to each other, elbows below the shoulders, shoulder-width apart. Draw your lower belly up as you shrug the shoulder heads and triceps back. Take 5–8 breaths before switching sides or moving on to the deeper variation in Step 4.
Step 4: This variation is deeper, so if Step 3 feels good, just stay there. To go further, lay the back foot flat on the floor and focus on pushing down through its outer (pinky) edge. Extend your right leg straight out to the side, bring your right foot in line with your right hip. Flex your right foot. Slide your hands next to your ribcage, then press your upper body into a high Cobra position, keeping your elbows slightly bent. Lift your lower belly to prevent any compression in your lower back. Lift your sternum up and keep your shoulders back. Take 5–8 breaths. Release your chest back to the floor and roll over onto your back to switch sides.