Ardha Matsyendrasana or Half Lord of the Fishes Pose is a seated spinal twist that brings you into the center of the body and helps you access the deep space of the pelvic bowl. In any twisting posture, the hips are your foundation so avoid twisting from the pelvis. Instead, empty out the pelvis and twist from the thoracic spine. In this posture that is very important.
To enter the pose on the right side fold your left knee underneath you so your left heel is next to your right hip. Make sure there is no discomfort in the knee. Your knee should line up with your sternum.
Cross your right leg over your folded left leg with the sole of your foot on the ground. Take a moment to settle your hips between the open space between your left foot and left hip. Both sitting bones are on the ground.
Make sure both of your knees are lined up along the centerline. Your sternum, pubic bone, and knees should all be lined up. Keeping all these points aligned will make sure your right foot isn’t too close to the pelvis. You should be able to see your toes ahead of your right knee.
Inhale and suck the belly in. Drop the right hip down. Allow a gentle internal rotation of the right hip and hug your torso close to your thigh.
Wrap your left arm around your right leg and twist to the right, looking over the right shoulder.
To take it deeper suck the belly in and lift the ribcage around the right thigh.
Place your right hand on the ground.
Drop the left shoulder in front of the right knee and reach down to grab your foot. If you can’t reach the foot reach down to the ground.
Lift your chest and bring your right hand behind your back and find the top of your left thigh.
Slowly release yourself from the pose and repeat on the other side.
If you feel any intense pain in your knee or hip joint back off the pose.
Ardha Matsyendrasana purifies the digestive system. It also realigns the sacrum and brings energy into the center of the body.
Watch Kino’s video below for more detailed instructions.
Yoga is a journey into the center of yourself. Never judge yourself. Regardless of what shape your body can make appreciate the process of finding the pose.