Standing Wide Angle Forward Bend
(or prasarita padottanasana
) provides an intense stretch to the back of your legs and also stretches your inner thighs. As with all forward bends, Standing Wide Angle Forward Bend
can help release tension and improve circulation in your upper body. You may want to practice this pose after performing a series of standing poses to relieve fatigue.
As a general rule, you should stand with your feet approximately 3 feet apart when performing this pose.
However, you can adjust your stance depending on your height. If you are tall, you should stand with your feet further apart. If you are short, you should stand with your feet closer together. Even after adjusting your stance, you may not be able to reach your palms down to the floor. In this case, you can rest each of your palms on a block or bend your knees.
Use caution performing Standing Wide Angle Forward Bend
if you have high blood pressure or lower back problems. If you become dizzy easily, come out of the pose very slowly
How can I modify this pose if I have lower back problems?
|Begin in Mountain Pose.|
|Place your hands on your hips.|
|Step your right foot to the right 2 to 3 feet.
(Make sure your feet are parallel and your toes are pointing straight ahead.)
|Exhale as you bend forward from your hips, keeping your heels on the floor and your back flat.|
|Place your palms on the floor approximately shoulder width apart. Your arms should be straight.|
|Spread your fingers out, with your middle fingers pointing straight ahead.|
|Point the crown of your head toward the floor and tilt your sitting bones toward the ceiling to lengthen your spine.|
|Exhale as you bend your elbows and bring your chest toward the space between your thighs.|
|Relax your head and neck toward the floor and feel your spine lengthening.
(Make sure your knees are not locked.)
(Visualize the back of your legs and your inner thighs stretching with each breath.
|Hold the pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute. |
|To come out of the pose, bring your feet together. Inhale as you bend your knees and slowly roll up to a standing position. Then return to Mountain Pose.|
If you have lower back problems, you can perform the pose using a wall for support. Begin in Mountain Pose facing a wall, about one arm's length away from the wall. Step your right foot to the right 2 to 3 feet and then place your palms on the wall. Bend forward from your hips, walking your hands down the wall until your upper body and legs form a 90-degree angle. Remember to keep your back straight and to lengthen your spine. This modification is also useful if you have high blood pressure.
How can I intensify the stretch in Standing Wide Angle Forward Bend?
Perform the pose as described above and then walk your hands back between your feet. As you walk your hands back, make sure you keep your hands shoulder width apart. This modification deepens the pose to intensify the stretch in the back of your legs and inner thighs.