Bound Angle Pose (Baddha Konasana) has many names, including, Cobbler’s Pose, Butterfly and Diamond. Bound Angle, Butterfly and Diamond describe the shape of your legs while in the pose. Cobbler is derived from the way that Indian cobbler’s traditionally sat with shoes held between their feet as they worked. Whatever you choose to call it, it is a great pose with many benefits — one of my favorites!
Baddha Konasana is excellent for opening the groin and hip areas. It stretches the adductor muscles of the thighs, helps alleviate pain from sciatica and increases circulation around the major arteries in the groin, legs and thighs.
This pose is particularly beneficial to women during their menstrual cycles and throughout menopause as it stimulates the ovaries. If practiced consistently throughout pregnancy, it is thought that Baddha Konasana will help ease the pain of childbirth. In men, cobbler’s pose stimulates the prostate.
According to Sarah Powers from, author of Insight Yoga, this pose will also stimulate the kidney meridian which flows along the inside of the legs and through the torso. It will also help relieve mild depression, anxiety and fatigue. Yoga Journal writes; “Traditional texts say that Baddha Konasana destroys disease and gets rid of fatigue.
Begin by sitting in staff pose (Dandasana) with your legs stretched out in front of you. Exhale and draw your knees into your chest. As you inhale, allow your knees to open gently to the sides towards the floor.
Allow your hips to remain on the floor with your body weight distributed evenly between both sides. Keep your spine listed by lengthening your crown towards the ceiling and feel your tail bone and sitting bones pressing into the earth.
Press the soles of your feet together and bring your hands to the floor behind you. Press your fingers into the ground and use your arms to create more length throughout the spine.
Maintaining this feeling in your spine, bring your arms to the front of your body, hands on the floor, and begin to gently bend forward, taking care to hinge at your hips. Continue to lengthen your spine as you inhale and fold forward on the exhale. Allow your hands or forearms to rest on the floor where comfortable for support. You may want to place a bolster or block beneath your forehead. Focus on your breath and rest in the posture for 5 deep breaths.
To come out of the posture, place your hands beside you on the floor. Press firmly through your arms and as you lift up, extend through the chest and bring yourself back to a seated position. Stretch your legs out in front of you back into staff pose.
If you have issues with your knees, use blocks or cushions under your thighs to support your legs.
If feel that your spine is rounding as you fold forward or if you have any discomfort in your lower back, elevate your hips slightly by sitting on a small cushion or folded towel.
If your hips are tight, increase the angle at your knees by moving your feet further away from your body.
A delicious variation of this posture is in a reclined position (Supta Baddha Konasana) – especially wonderful if you are tired or feel inclined to practice something more restorative.
- Relax the sides of your legs.
- Gently draw your feet towards your groin with your hands.
- Open your chest.
- Lengthen your spine and fold from the hips.
Suggested Counterpose: Hero Pose (Virasana)
Posture Category: Seated
Direction of the Spine: Elongation, Forward Bending