How to do Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend)

If you’re looking to improve your flexibility, Paschimottanasana is a great pose to try. This seated forward fold can help elongate the spine and release tension in the back and neck. In addition, Paschimottanasana has many health benefits that you can enjoy! In this tutorial, we will show you how to do Paschimottanasana safely and effectively. We’ll also provide some tips on how to get the most out of this pose.

Before we look at how to do Paschimottanasana let’s look at some of the benefits of the pose.

Benefits of Paschimottanasana

There are many benefits of Paschimottanasana, some of which include:

  • Stretching the back and shoulders
  • Stretching the hamstrings
  • Lengthening the spine
  • Improving circulation in the abdominal organs
  • Stimulating the nervous system
  • Reducing stress and anxiety
  • Stimulates the internal organs

Contraindications for Paschimottanasana

Paschimottanasana is generally a safe pose for most people. However, there are a few contraindications to be aware of:

If you have a hernia, Paschimottanasana may aggravate it.

If you have a slipped disc it’s best to avoid this pose.

If you have high blood pressure, Paschimottanasana may not be the best pose for you.

If you are pregnant, Paschimottanasana may not be the best pose for you.

If you have any other health concerns, please consult your doctor before doing Paschimottanasana or any other yoga poses.

How to do Paschimottanasana or seated forward bend

Now that we know some of the benefits and contraindications for Paschimottanasana, let’s look at how to do the pose.

Paschimottanasana is a seated yoga posture so you will need to sit on your mat with your legs straight out in front of you. Your feet are flexed. Think of pushing your heels away from your sitting bones.

Draw your belly in and imagine emptying the inner space of the pelvis.

Lengthen through the spine and take a deep breath in. On an exhale, begin to fold forward from the hip joints, keeping the spine long. Don’t round your back to bend forward.

You can place your hands on your knees, ankles, or feet. If you can’t reach your feet, place a strap around the soles of your feet and hold onto the strap.

Keep the spine long as you fold forward, letting the head hang heavy. Breathe deeply and hold the pose for five breaths. To release the pose, slowly roll up to seated on an inhale.

Tips for Paschimottanasana

Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of Paschimottanasana:

Keep the spine long as you fold forward. This will help to lengthen the spine and release tension in the back and neck.

Engage your quadriceps to help release your hamstrings.

Don’t hyperextend your knees.

Breathe deeply into the posture. This will help to relax the body and mind.

Paschimottanasana is a great pose for improving flexibility and releasing tension. With some practice, you’ll be able to get deeper into the pose and enjoy all the benefits it has to offer! Watch the video with Kino to find out more about the pose.