Forward bends are by far some of my favourite asanas!! In general, they are soothing, calming and stretch the entire back side of the body. They are great at releasing tension while improving circulation in the legs, knees, hips, lower back, spine and torso. Forward bends encourage lengthening of the spine creating space between the vertebrae. While the back body is lengthening and stretching the front body is being toned and firmed. The abdominal organs are receiving a massage which stimulates digestion, and elimination.
To perform Pada Prasarita Paschimottanasana (Wide Leg Forward Bend)
- Start in Dandasana, seated on the floor with both legs out in front
- Take the legs as wide as you are comfortable with and where you can continue to sit with an erect spine
- Bring hands to the floor between your legs for support as you continue to lengthen the spine inhaling
- As you exhale continue to lengthen the spine as you begin to move forward from the hips
- Come into the forward bend as far as you are comfortable with
- Hold the pose for several breaths then find an inhale and supporting yourself with your hands as needed return to seated position
- Stretches hamstrings and adductors/inner thighs
- Lengthens spine and frees the hip joint
- Tones abdominal organs improving digestion
- Be sure to move from the hip joint and not the lower back
- If sitting up with legs wide without rounding the spine is a challenge a blanket or block could be used to create more space for movement
- Listen to your body and check in for holding and tension. Let gravity do the work!!
Cindy started practicing yoga in 2002, and it was “love at first sight” practice. She completed the SOYA 500 hour Yoga Teacher Training program and excelled in her studies. She now owns and operates Intuit Yoga in Mackenzie, BC. Cindy continued her study with Susi Hately of Functional Synergy providing her deeper knowledge in how to offer students with limitations a safe, comfortable approach to asana. Cindy has indepth training in the chakras and subtle anatomy with Anodea Judith. She leads international yoga retreats annually. Cindy loves the creative flow of vinyasa, the quiet release of yin, and the meditative quality of mindfulness. Cindy is a Lead Trainer for SOYA’s 200 hour and 300 hour Professional YTT programs in Prince George, BC.