Prasarita Padottanasana – Wide-Legged Standing Forward Bend
In a yoga class you will often find yourself restoring in forward fold posses. A Forward bend looks very simple and easy to do, just don’t underestimate the power it can have on the mind and entire body.
Its important to remember yoga is not about being incredibly flexible and it certainly doesn’t matter how close you get your head or hands to the ground. What matters is that you learn to steady your legs and your spine while in your bend forward.
Try to include a forward fold into your everyday, a Forward Fold in the morning will wake up the spine and promote circulation through the body. A Forward Fold in the evening will calm the mind and slow down the heart rate and prepare you for a great sleep.
Clams the brain
Stimulates the liver and kidneys
Stretches the hamstrings, hips, calves
Strengthens your feet, ankles, and legs, shoulders and upper back
Lengthens the neck and spine
Relives headache and insomnia
Lets get into the pose!
Stand tall in your Tadasana (Mountain Pose, neutral alignment)
Then take the feet wide – around 4 feet apart
Place you hands to your hips
Keep the feet parallel (arches of the feet should be in line with one another) and press down with all four corners of your feet.
Engage the legs by drawing the energy up the thighs
Slightly lift your chest as you inhale
On the exhale, fold forward from the hips- keep the middle body (chest) long
Take your fingers to the floor, directly under your shoulders
Try to keep the back of your neck nice and long,
Protect the knees by creating a slight bend- use the strength of the hamstrings to lengthen through the body
Avoid rounding through your back.
Keep space between the ears and shoulders, and let your head relax towards the floor.
Hold the pose for 30 seconds or 5 rounds of breathe….
To come out of the pose… Take several breaths to come up slowly. Bring your hands to your hips and slowly come up half way to a flat back, then lift all the way to standing, Step your feet together, come into Mountain Pose and relax the breathe.