Wide Legged Forward Bend C  -Prasarita Padottanasana C

Step by step

  • From Tadasana, step the feet wide apart, feet as close to parallel as feels comfortable. You are looking for stability and grounding.
  • Lift your inner arches by drawing the inner ankles up. Firm the outer edges of your feet and big toes into the floor. Engage your thighs by drawing them up. Interlace your fingers behind your back.
  • Lengthen your spine and open your chest as you inhale.
  • Release your shoulders down your back and draw your shoulder blades together as you fold from your hips bringing your hands overhead.
  • Keep your back straight and release your head down towards the floor - keep your chest open by maintaining a focus on bringing your shoulder blades together, and aim your hands a little further overhead keeping your arms as straight as feels comfortable for you.
  • Stay in this pose anywhere between 5 and 10 breaths.
  • To come out of this pose, inhale and lift back up as you press into your feet. Come back into Mountain Pose.

Beginners' tips

  • If you have less mobility in your shoulders, use a belt and work your way towards bringing your hands closer together until eventually, over time, you may clasp your hands.

Benefits

  • Stretches the back and inside of the legs.
  • Opens the hips.
  • Stretches the spine, shoulders and chest.
  • Calms the mind.
  • Eases tension in the upper back.

Watch out for

  • It is important is to keep the back as long as possible, and the front of the body as open as possible. 
  • Be careful not to overstretch your hamstrings or your shoulder girdle.
     

Variations