Paschimottonasana (Seated forward bend)


paschimotassanaA man who as a physical being is always turned toward the outside, thinking that his happiness lies outside him; finally he turns inward and discovers that the source is within him.”
~ Soren Kierkegaard

Stretches the hamstrings on the back of the legs; stretches and lengthens the entire spine; massages the internal organs, especially the digestive organs; relieves digestive problems; relieves problems with sciatica; invigorates the nervous system.
It stimulates the manipura chakra (solar plexus center) and balances the pranayama within the body. It also calms the mind and improves concentration. (For those of you who have children in the midst of end of year exams!)

How to practice at home:
Sit up straight with your legs together, stretched out in front of you. Point both feet straight up towards the ceiling.
Elongate the sitbones so as to help remove any curvature in the spine. Inhale, and stretch your arms up over your head and lengthen the entire spine upwards. Exhale and bend forward from the hips keeping your spine as elongated as possible, reaching towards your feet with your hands as you come down.
Let your hands fall comfortably on top of the feet (holding the toes), shins or thighs, or alongside the legs on the floor.

This article was kindly contributed by the wonderful YTF member and owner of Yoga Lova, Nadine Hurwitz.

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