Paschimottanasana - Seated Forward Fold

 
Paschimottanasana  @_ kimberley _fry

Paschimottanasana @_kimberley_fry

Pronunciation: (posh-ee-moh-tan-asana)

Paschima:// back

Uttana:// intense stretch

Benefits:

  • Calms the mind and relieves the symptoms of depression, anxiety and headaches

  • Promotes inner focus and self reflection.

  • Creates space in the spine, shoulders and hamstrings

  • Eases menstrual discomfort

  • Stimulates the Manipura chakra situated in the solar plexus or behind the naval. internal organs such as the kidneys and liver, improving digestion

How To:

  1. Begin seated in Dandasana (staff pose), legs extended out in front, toes flexing towards your face;

  2. Inhale, raise your arms above your head, lengthening through the torso

  3. Exhale, fold forward from the hips, taking hold of the outer edges of the feet.

  4. Concave your back, keeping your chest lifted, elbows bent outwards.

  5. Inhale, and on the exhale pull your chest toward your toes, keeping you back concave.

  6. Maintain and breath for 1 - 3 minutes.

 
Seated Forward Fold  @_ kimberley _fry

Seated Forward Fold @_kimberley_fry

 

Important Things To Note:

  • Rather than hunching the back to reach your forehead to your knees, give length to the spine and hamstrings by concaving the back, lifting the chest and reaching forward rather than down.

  • As Paschimottanasana is connected to the Manipura Chakra, it is a great pose to practice outside, absorbing the Sun’s energy through grounding down to the Earth.

  • As this pose can be challenging it is important to focus on breath, breathing into the areas that are tight and letting go of any tension.

Props:

  • Use a folded blanket or fold your mat and sit with your buttock on the edge, to give space and length to the hamstrings.

  • To add length, and to ensure correct posture, use a yoga strap as pictured.