Seated Forward Bend Pose - Paschimottanasana
About Yoga Seated Forward Bend Pose
The seated forward bend posture is classified as a basic yoga pose. Do not be misled by the simplicity of the sequence of the paschimottanasana, because it actually features a whole treasure trove of health benefits which will be discussed later. The seated forward bend pose not only gives you a full body stretch, it also directs your focus inward: it directs your attention to achieving mental clarity, inner peace and focus. Before performing the seated forward bend position you can practice a few other yoga poses to warm up your muscles. These preparatory poses include the Balasana, the Janu Sirasana and the Uttanasana.
Step By Step Instructions
Follow the simple sequence presented below to perform the Paschimottanasana!
- Position yourself on the yoga mat by sitting down with your legs extended straight out in front of you.
- Stretch your back and hold it straight as you extend your arms upwards towards the ceiling.
- Slowly start to bend forward, towards your feet. Keep your feet in place, side by side and extended, just as you had positioned them in step 1.
- As soon as you feel that bending any further will require you to bend your lower back completely, bring your arms down towards your lower legs, ankles or toes (whichever one you can reach easily) and hold onto them. Use this added support to deepen the forward bend.
- Maintain this pose for as long as you can, with the minimum time duration being 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Focus on your deep breathing and allow your mind and body to relax and unwind.
- To exit the pose begin by extending your arms out in front of you, then slowly pull yourself up and out of the forward bend until you are back in the step 1 position.
The Paschimottanasana has a host of health benefits. Let’s find out all about them!
- Relieves stress, anxiety, mild depression and fraught nerves.
- Calms the mind and body.
- Acts as a stimulant for the liver, kidneys, uterus and ovaries.
- Stretches and strengthens the hamstrings, spine and shoulders.
- Enhances the functioning of the digestive system.
- Alleviates menstrual and menopausal symptoms.
- Cures headaches and lessens fatigue.
- Can be used as therapy for insomnia, infertility, high blood pressure and sinusitis.
- It is believed to reduce obesity.
Things to Remember!
Individuals with asthma, diarrhea or back injuries should refrain from attempting the seated forward bend posture.