top of page

Garudasana (Eagle Pose): Step-by-Step Guide, Benefits & Modifications

In the vast realm of yoga, there exists a multitude of poses that not only challenge our physical limits but also offer a gateway to spiritual awakening. One such pose that beautifully combines strength, balance, and concentration is Garudasana, also known as Eagle Pose. Rooted in ancient Indian traditions, Garudasana invites us to embody the majestic grace of an eagle while nurturing our inner strength. So, let's delve into the essence of this captivating asana and explore its many facets.

Garudasana (Eagle Pose)

Garudasana, derived from the Sanskrit words "garuda" (eagle) and "asana" (pose), embodies the fluid movements and focused energy of an eagle in flight. This pose symbolizes the eagle's agility, keen vision, and ability to soar to great heights. Just as an eagle gracefully maneuvers through the sky, Garudasana calls upon us to find balance and inner harmony amidst the challenges of life.

Garudasana holds a profound meaning beyond its physical form. By imitating the eagle's spirit, we tap into qualities such as strength, focus, and precision. It teaches us to embrace both the lightness of flight and the stability of groundedness, offering a metaphorical reminder of the delicate equilibrium we strive for in our daily lives.

How to Perform Garudasana

  1. Start by standing tall with your feet hip-width apart and your arms relaxed by your sides.

  2. Shift your weight onto your right foot and slowly lift your left foot, crossing it over your right thigh. If possible, hook your left foot behind your right calf.

  3. Extend your arms straight forward at shoulder height.

  4. Cross your right arm over your left arm at the elbow joint, bringing your palms to touch if possible. If that is challenging, bring the backs of your hands together.

  5. Gently bend your knees and sink into a seated position as if you were sitting back in an imaginary chair.

  6. Maintain a steady gaze at a fixed point in front of you, finding your drishti (focal point).

  7. Hold the pose for several breaths, enjoying the sensations and stability it brings.

  8. Release the pose by slowly unraveling your legs and arms, returning to a standing position with your feet hip-width apart.

Garudasana (Eagle Pose)

When to Do Garudasana

Garudasana is an excellent pose to practice in the morning to awaken your mind and body or in the evening to release tension and find inner calmness. However, you can incorporate it into your routine at any time that suits you best.

Preparatory Poses

To prepare your body for Garudasana, consider practicing these poses:

  1. Uttanasana (Forward Fold)

  2. Vrikshasana (Tree Pose)

  3. Gomukhasana (Cow Face Pose)

Follow-up Poses

After practicing Garudasana, you can explore these complementary poses:

  1. Utthita Trikonasana (Extended Triangle Pose)

  2. Virabhadrasana III (Warrior III Pose)

  3. Padmasana (Lotus Pose)


Garudasana activates the Svadhisthana (Sacral) Chakra, located in the lower abdomen. This energy center governs creativity, emotional balance, and fluidity. By engaging this chakra, Garudasana can stimulate our passion and unleash our creative potential.

Svadhisthana Chakra (Sacral Chakra)


As you settle into Garudasana, you may choose to chant the mantra "Om Vayuputraya Namaha." This mantra pays homage to Lord Hanuman, who symbolizes strength, devotion, and fearlessness. Reciting this mantra can enhance your focus and deepen your connection with the eagle's spirit.

Alignment Cues

To ensure proper alignment in Garudasana, keep these cues in mind:

  1. Engage your core and lengthen your spine.

  2. Maintain a soft bend in your standing leg.

  3. Relax your shoulders away from your ears.

  4. Squeeze your thighs together and press your crossed foot firmly against your calf.

  5. Keep your elbows in line with your shoulders as you cross your arms.

Duration of Hold

Initially, aim to hold Garudasana for 30 seconds to 1 minute on each side. Gradually increase the duration as your balance and strength improve.


To enhance your focus and balance in Garudasana, fix your gaze on a stationary point directly in front of you. Find your drishti and allow it to guide you throughout the pose.

Physical and Spiritual Awareness: Garudasana offers both physical and spiritual benefits. Physically, it stretches the shoulders, upper back, and hips while strengthening the legs and ankles. Spiritually, it fosters concentration, clarity, and a sense of inner freedom.

Beginners' Tips

If you're new to Garudasana, these tips can help you ease into the pose:

  1. Start with a modified version by crossing your foot lightly over your opposite shin instead of wrapping it around your calf.

  2. Use a wall or chair for support until you develop your balance.

  3. Focus on maintaining steady breathing throughout the pose to enhance stability.

Who Should Not Do Garudasana

Individuals with knee or ankle injuries should avoid Garudasana. Additionally, those with high blood pressure, migraines, or vertigo should approach this pose with caution or seek guidance from a qualified yoga instructor.

Who Should Do Garudasana

Garudasana is suitable for individuals looking to enhance their balance, focus, and overall body strength. It can benefit those seeking an empowering practice that cultivates both physical and mental agility.

Benefits of Garudasana

  1. Improves balance and coordination.

  2. Strengthens the legs, ankles, and hips.

  3. Stretches the shoulders, upper back, and thighs.

  4. Enhances focus and mental clarity.

  5. Increases circulation and energy flow.

  6. Promotes a sense of grounding and inner stability.

  7. Stimulates the Svadhisthana Chakra, fostering creativity and emotional balance.

Variations of Garudasana

For those seeking additional challenges or diversity in their practice, consider exploring these variations of Garudasana:

Utthita Garudasana (Standing Eagle Pose)

Utthita Garudasana, or Standing Eagle Pose, symbolizes the grace and strength of an eagle in flight. It invites us to find balance, focus, and a sense of freedom in our practice.

Utthita Garudasana (Standing Eagle Pose)

How to Perform Utthita Garudasana

  1. Begin in a standing position with feet hip-width apart.

  2. Shift your weight onto your right foot and cross your left thigh over the right thigh.

  3. If possible, hook the left foot behind the right calf.

  4. Extend your arms straight forward at shoulder height.

  5. Cross your right arm over the left arm at the elbow joint, bringing the palms together or touching the backs of the hands.

  6. Keep the spine tall and the gaze focused on a fixed point.

  7. Hold the pose for a few breaths, finding stability and ease.

  8. Release the pose by slowly unraveling the legs and arms, and returning to a standing position.

Uttan Garudasana (Forward Fold Eagle Pose)

Uttanasana Garudasana, or Forward Fold Eagle Pose, combines the benefits of a forward fold with the grace and balance of the eagle. It encourages introspection, deep stretching, and the release of tension.

Uttan Garudasana (Forward Fold Eagle Pose)

How to Perform Uttan Garudasana

  1. Begin in a standing position with feet hip-width apart.

  2. Cross your right thigh over the left thigh, hooking the right foot behind the left calf.

  3. Slowly fold forward from the hips, allowing your upper body to hang over your legs.

  4. Maintain a soft bend in the knees if needed.

  5. Reach your crossed arms forward, crossing the right arm over the left at the elbow joint.

  6. If possible, bring the palms together or touch the backs of the hands.

  7. Relax the head and neck, finding a comfortable position for the gaze.

  8. Take a few deep breaths, surrendering any tension and finding release.

  9. To release the pose, gently unravel the legs and arms, slowly rising back up to a standing position.

Modifications for Garudasana

If you experience limitations in the pose, these modifications can help you adapt the posture to your needs:

  1. Use a strap or towel to connect your hands if you cannot reach your palms together.

  2. Lower your crossed leg to rest on the floor instead of wrapping it around your calf.

Common Mistakes

Avoid these common mistakes to make the most of your Garudasana practice:

  1. Allowing your standing knee to collapse inward. Maintain a strong, aligned posture throughout the pose.

  2. Holding your breath or tensing your shoulders. Remember to breathe deeply and relax your upper body.

  3. Forcing the foot wrap. If your foot cannot comfortably hook behind your calf, simply rest it against the opposite shin.

Safety and Precautions

To practice Garudasana safely, keep these precautions in mind:

  1. Listen to your body and honor its limitations. Do not push yourself beyond a comfortable range of motion.

  2. If you feel any pain or discomfort, gently release the pose and consult a healthcare professional if necessary.

  3. Warm up your body with gentle stretches before attempting Garudasana to prevent injuries.

Additional Preparation Tips

To enhance your Garudasana practice, consider the following tips:

  • Face east while performing Garudasana as it is traditionally believed to enhance spiritual energy.

  • Wear comfortable, form-fitting clothing that allows for unrestricted movement.

  • Find a quiet and clean space that inspires tranquility. Consider diffusing calming essential oils or lighting a fragrant candle.

  • Choose soothing instrumental music or nature sounds to accompany your practice.

Garudasana invites us to embrace the strength and grace of an eagle, both in our physical bodies and our inner selves. By practicing this awe-inspiring pose, we unlock the potential for balance, focus, and a profound sense of liberation. So, spread your wings, embody the eagle's spirit, and soar to new heights of self-discovery through the captivating art of Garudasana.

Happy yoga-ing, everyone!


If you have found this information valuable, make sure to subscribe to our weekly newsletters. Stay updated and never miss out on anything while you continue your journey toward optimal health and holistic living.


Rated 0 out of 5 stars.
No ratings yet

Add a rating
Pooja Chauhan_edited_edited.jpg

About the Author

Namaste! I'm Pooja Chauhan

RYT 200Hrs | Meditation Coach 

Diving deep into the realm of yoga to revive its original teachings to create a significant impact in preserving and sharing them with the world.

  • Pinterest
  • Instagram
  • Facebook

Take the leap of Faith! - Subscribe NOW!

By entering your info, you’ll receive – FREE access to exclusive insights, private Q+As, inspiring content and the latest trends and roadmap for your delivered with 💜 to your inbox. (Unsub anytime with a click.) You also agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

bottom of page