I'm not going to lie, this pose probably has a sanskrit name (any yoga teachers reading this wanna take a stab at it?) but my google skills have failed me and I can't figure out what it is. Regardless, it's a great pose to pause in while stepping to the front of the mat from downward dog or three legged dog. Try to breathe at least five breaths here before stepping (and when you step down, go slower than you want to go) and notice how strength-building it is to move slower.
While I've labeled it Yoga for the Core, it's actually a total body pose. Arm strength is required to push the mat away, leg strength is required to elongate the leg and press the mass away. Abs and intercostal muscles are being used to hug the knee in toward the chest. The back is strengthened by that upward pull from the core and thus, a rounding of the back. It's not an easy pose, but it's effective for strength building, that's for sure.
Have you tried this pose before? Will you? Do you have a yoga pose you'd like to see broken down like this? Tell me in the comments below.
PS- More yoga poses explained.