You Don’t Have To Sit Cross Legged To Do Yoga … In-Person Pranakriya Yoga Comes To Los Alamos

By Jacci Gruninger, MS, C-IAYT, ERYT500

Do you think you can’t do yoga because you can’t sit cross legged? We have all seen the ancient yogis sitting cross legged and if you browse Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat or other social media platforms you see “star” yoga, but that’s not what yoga is really about.

Last week we discussed why we do yoga and the week before what yoga is. Remember, yoga is really about getting to know yourself and creating your healthiest self.

Being healthy doesn’t require that you can sit cross-legged.

So, what other options do you have? First, you might be able to sit cross-legged – you might just need a little support. Let’s take a look at some options.

1. Tight hips?

Fold a blanket or towel into a square or rectangle and sit halfway off the blanket so your pelvis is lifted and slightly tilted forward (anteriorly). This helps to lift the spine out of the pelvis. Still not helping? Try two or even three towels/blankets.

Another option is to fold two blankets into two separate squares. Turn them like a diamond with the point facing forward. Sit on the blankets with the point between your crossed legs or bring the soles of your feet together. This will give your hips more support.

You might do this and if your knees are still floating in the air, place rolled towels or yoga blocks under your thighs. Give yourself some support.

2. Sensitive Ankles?

Fold a blanket into quarters or a bath towel in half and place it on the floor.
Fold a second blanket or towel as above and sit on it.

If you have a cranky low-back, you might not want to sit cross legged or if your knees hurt, cross legged might not be your best choice. Instead consider one of these options.

1. If you have two yoga blocks, stack one on top of the other and from a kneeling or table position, place them in between your ankles/feet (longways) and sit back on the blocks.

2. Taller or not quite right? Add a third block or folded blanket. (You can also do this with a tightly folded towel or two bed pillows.)

3. Sit on a blanket or folded towel with your legs straight out, in a butterfly shape or knees bent

4. Sit on a chair until the movement portion of practice starts

Remember, you also don’t have to stay in the same seated pose the entire time. Yoga is about listening to your body and making small or big adjustments to support yourself.

See you on the mat…

Pranakriya Yoga Comes to Los Alamos
I’m excited to announce that my friend and fellow Pranakriya yoga teacher, Kristine Coblentz and I will be starting in-person classes the week of July 19 at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church* to share our love of yoga with the Los Alamos and White Rock communities as well as anyone else who would like to join us.

You can find our schedule at, or on Facebook High Mesa Yoga or email us at
6:15-7:15 p.m. Tuesdays Yoga for EVERY Body with Jacci
6:15-7:15 p.m. Thursdays Yoga for EVERY Body with Kristine
6-7p.m. Sundays Chill Yoga with Jacci & Kristine (alternating schedule)

These are pay-what-you-can classes. The recommended investment is $5-15 per class. Bring a yoga mat and towel or blanket to class.

This one-hour yoga class is for the beginner to the more experienced student. Participants are invited to move at their own level and pace. Jacci and Kristine will provide modifications and variations so all can benefit from this practice. We will explore safe alignment, strength, balance, and mobility through the practice of yoga postures, functional movement, breathwork and centering.

Chill Yoga
Join us on Sunday evening to wrap up your weekend and prepare for your week. This Chill Yoga class incorporates yoga postures, gentle movement sequences, breath work, guided silent meditation and relaxation to support increased awareness and mindfulness of the breath and body and quieting of the nervous system.

Bethlehem Lutheran Church is not a sponsor of these classes.

Jacci Gruninger is a Certified Yoga Therapist and Thai Yoga Massage Therapist. She has been teaching for 21 years and spent 12 of those years training yoga teachers for the Pranakriya School of Yoga Healing Arts. She regularly helps clients manage the ups and downs of life with yoga, meditation, breathwork and bodywork. Her office is at 190 Central Park Square #209. For her in-person teaching schedule and information on other services, visit to find out more.