Step by step • Start in Tadasana/Mountain pose. • Inhale as you raise your arms. • As you exhale, engage your thighs, pull the belly in and up deep from the pelvic floor and bend forward, hinging from the hips. • Place your hands/fingertips on the floor, in front of your feet or next to your feet, or hold onto the back of your ankles or calves. • Keep your hips over your heels as you press your heels into the floor. Roll the top of your inner thighs slightly in. • Let your head hang, keeping the neck relaxed. • Lengthen your spine as you inhale. Soften deeper into the pose as you exhale.
• Bend your knees to maintain length in your spine.
• Internally rotating your thighs will help you to spread your sitting bones, giving you more room to fold.
Benefits • Stretches the back of the legs, the hips and spine. • Strengthens the legs, thighs and knees. • Balances the nervous system, calms the mind. • Improves digestion, stimulates the liver and kidneys. • Can relieve tension in the lower back when practised with bent knees.
Watch out for...
• Prioritize length in your front body over depth in the pose.
• Bend your knees if you feel any discomfort in your lower back. • If you have any back injuries please check with your health professional before practising forward bends. You may need to modify or avoid them depending on your individual condition.
• You can also practise a Rag Doll version of forward bend: • Keeping the legs straight or slightly bent, allow the back to relax and round. Let your head be heavy. • Either allow your hands to rest on the floor or cross your arms hooking each hand in the opposite elbow crease. • From here you might like to sway from side to side.
Alternative Pose Half Standing Forward Fold Ardha Uttanasana
Variation Hand to Big Toe Forward Fold Padangusthasana
Open level humanist yoga classes in Milton Keynes
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