Stretching excersises to improve sitting cross legged ?

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I’m looking for stretching excersises to improve sitting cross legged? I can sitt cross legged for a while, but after a while both my thighs and knees start protesting. I’m assuming this is related to the fact that only my ancle and foot are touching the ground while the calfs, knee and thighs are at an angle of the tatami.

Im hoping that there are some proven stretching excersise from either zen meditation or yoga that can aid me.

I will need photos of the excersises or a reference to a book I can purchase.

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The best I can suggest is that the problem is in hip flexibility, since in order to share the weight with the rest of the leg, the thighs have to rotate outwards and downwards.  The best I have been able to do is to sit on a bench and take up one leg only into the groin, and then relax while working to un-round the lower back and get the knee onto the bench.  Then switch legs, and eventually place both of them, one in front of the other, in front of you on the bench surface.  Note that you are not crossing the ankles at this point – the will require even more rotational stretch, and so will take more time.  Your genetics (the actual anatomy of your hip joints) may limit your attempts in this direction though.

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