How To Do Standing Straddle Splits

Chloe Freytag demonstrating Standing Straddle Splits in a blue tank top and yoga pants

Standing Straddle Splits stretches hamstrings, inner thighs and low back. This is a basic pose that most people are able to learn and those that learn it and enjoy the benefits of more open legs muscles and less lower back pain. If you have trouble with tight hamstrings or lower back, Standing Straddle Splits is a good pose for you to practice.

When you first learn how to do Standing Straddle Splits keep your knees slightly bent and, if you have especially tight legs, put a block or stool in front of you so that you have somewhere to rest your hands without the need to go all the way to the floor. As you continue to practice this pose and you feel your flexibility improving, you can lengthen your legs and get rid of the block in order to take your hands to the floor. In addition to softening your knees, the distance between your feet will make the stretch either more or less intense. The wider you stand, the deeper the stretch.

If you have any lower back trouble and are unable to bend forward from a standing position try Seated Straddle Splits instead. This will eliminate the forward flexion but maintain the inner thigh and hamstring stretch. Standing Straddle Splits and other yoga poses are excellent ways to open legs, inner thighs, hips and lower back.

Here are the steps to perform Standing Straddle Splits:

1) From a standing position step feet apart slightly wider than shoulder-distance.

2) As you inhale reach arms overhead.

3) Tighten abdominals and exhale while folding forward and placing hands on ground in the center between your feet. Keep tailbone lifted and legs long.

4) Relax your neck and hold 30 seconds while breathing.

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