ENGLISH NAME: FORWARD BEND POSE
The word Paschim literally means west, Uttana means stretched out and asana is pose. Here the word paschim (west) doesn’t mean the west side rather it indicated the back of the body. The back of body is referred as paschim here. Hence a posture in which back of the body or spine is stretched out is called paschimottanasana (forward bend pose).
Technique of Paschimottanasana:
- Sit up with the legs stretched out straight in front of you on the floor.
- Keep the spine erect and toes flexed towards you.
- Bring your respiration to normal.
- Breathing in, slowly raise your both the arms straight above your head and stretch up.
- Slowly breathe out and bend forward from the hip joint, chin moving toward the toes keeping the spine erect.
- Place your hands on your legs, wherever they reach, without putting much effort.
- If possible hold of your toes and pull on them to help you go forward.
- Stay in this position as long as possible.
- After the exertion limit reached inhale and raise up stretching up your arms straight above your head.
- Breathe out and bring your arms down placing the palms on the ground.
- Relax for a while and try to feel the changes occurred in the body.
Note: it important to know that while bending forward it is important to move forward towards the toes, rather than down towards the knees.
Benefits of Paschimottanasana:
- Stretches the whole spine specifically lower back, hamstring and hips.
- Massages and tones the abdominal and pelvic organs.
- Improves the circulation.
- Stretches and strengthens the calf and thigh muscles.
- Activates the spinal nerves
- Tones the arms
- Reduces abdomen fat
Therapeutic applications of Paschimottanasana:
- Less height
- Useful for people who feel less energetic.