The benefit of Prasarita Padottanasana

Open wide into spread legs intense stretch to increase your flexibility. 

What does Prasarita Padottansana means? 
prasarita = outstretched limbs
pada = foot
ut = intense
tan = to stretch 
asana = pose 

The four variations of Prasarita Padottanasana
A: place palms between feed
B: place hands on hip
C: interlace fingers behind the back 
D: grab the big toes 

How to get into Prasarita Padottansana? 

  1. Standing in Tadasana (Mountain Pose), facing the broader part of the mat. Keep the feet apart at around three times the hip width, and make sure they are parallel. 
  2. Inhale. Place your palms on your hip.
  3. Exhale. Fold from the hips without bending the knees, lengthen the spine and bring the palm on the floor between the feet to Prasarita Padottansana A.  
  4. Stay for five breath. Focusing on lower the crown of the head on the floor (between your legs) without rounding the spine 
  5. Inhale. Continue to strengthen the spine and come up halfway lift and place your hands at the hip
  6. Exhale. Fold forward while keeping the palms on the hip, lengthen the spine and depress the shoulder to Prasarita Padottansana B 
  7. Stay for five breath 
  8. Inhale, lengthen the spine with the palms on the hip and come up
  9. Exhale, interlace fingers behind the back and fold forward. Bring the hands to the floor without bending the knees, lengthen the spine and depress shoulder to Prasarita Padottansana C
  10. Stay for five breath
  11. Inhale, place the hands on the hip and come up with control 
  12. Exhale, fold forward by grabbing the big toes with the first three fingers to Prasarita Padottansana D
  13. Stay for five breaths 
  14. Inhale, continue to lengthen the spine and place the hands on the hip to come up 

Important to note

  1. Gaze at nose tip
  2. Exhale when fold forward, stay for five breaths
  3. Lengthen your spine, don’t round your back

Preparation poses fo Prasarita Padottansana

Active pelvis and legs muscles 

  1. Adho Mukha Svanasana (downward-facing dog)
  2. Uttanasana (intense forward bend) 

Counter poses

Return your spine back to the neutral state

  1. Utkatasana (chair pose)
  2. Ustrasana (Camel) 

Contraindications and Cautions

  1. Lower-back problems: Avoid the full forward bend
  2. Modifications and Props

Beginner-friendly version

  1. Place 2 blocks on the floor, resting each of your palms on the end of a block instead of the floor
  2. If your back is still rounded, use a folding chair to support your forearms

Key Muscle for this pose

  1. Hips are bent by the engaging psoas, pectineus and rectus femoris at the front of the thigh
  2. Knees are straightened by the quadriceps muscles
  3. Feet and ankles are grounded by activating the tibialis anterior and posterior muscles as well as the muscles at bottom of the feet 
  4. Trunk bent forward by the rectus abdominus muscles
  5. The lower section of the trapezius draws the shoulders away from the ears 
  6. Shoulders and the upper arm muscles are lifted by the deltoids. While the elbows are bent by the upper arm muscles, biceps and brachialis. 
  7. The wrist and finger flexor muscle press the hands into the floor in order to stabilize the pose

Benefits:

Physical 

  1. Creates lengths in the spine
  2. Stretches lower backs of the legs and lower back – relieve pain
  3. Strengthens feet
  4. Provides rests to the heart
  5. Help to turn inward
  6. Feel heal and expand, especially after cycling, walking and running
  7. Reducing headache and uplifting insomnia
  8. Can do this pose directly in the morning (before eating anything)

Mental

  1. Relieve of stress, anxiety and depressions
  2. Uplifted the mood

Spiritual

  1. This leads to Sattva, a state of balance and harmony
  2. Activate the Crown chakra when placing the head on the floor
  3. Grounding negative and unwanted thoughts 

 

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