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Izzy’s Yoga Posture for the Month of June – Prasarita Padottanasana – Wide-legged Forward Bend

June 11th, 2018

Prasarita Padottanasana – Wide-legged Forward Bend

This is a challenging posture, which develops flexibility in the backs of the legs and mobility in the pelvis.  It is also an inversion, so take care to consider the things to watch listed below, before you start.



Improves mobility in the pelvis
Stretches the backs of the legs
Eases tension from the neck and shoulders
Improves stability by encouraging the weight to be well placed over the feet

How prepare for it


It’s important that your feet feel firm on the floor or on your mat for this posture, so ensure you are working on a grippy surface.


How to do it


Stand in Tadasana, Mountain pose
Take a wide stance with your feet – 3 to 4.5 feet apart depending on the length of your legs and the flexibility of your inner thighs
Breathe out before you start
As you breathe in, bring both arms up in front of you and overhead
As you breathe out, hinge forward from your hips, extending your arms forward and moving into a forward bend
Place your hands on your legs to begin with
If you are able to reach further, place your hands on the floor in front of you or on blocks to support your spine as it stretches
Slightly dip your spine and raise your head to encourage length in the legs – be careful to move gently
Relax your head and spine and feel the weight returning to your hands, which are supporting you
Try to keep your legs straight without locking the knees
Ensure you are balanced securely across both feet and encourage the weight to sit evenly between your toes and your heels
Breathe gently for 2 or 3 breaths and encourage the legs and back to relax – this will enable the stretch to take place
When you are ready to return to standing, bend your knees a little, place your hands on your hips, engage your gluteal muscles firmly.  Tucking your tail in, gently swing your spine back to an upright position
Alternatively, bend your knees then unroll your spine gently back to standing
Walk your feet together
Stand quietly in Tadasana and allow your breathing to return to normal

Things to watch


If you have problems with forward bending and your spine remains rounded, then use supports such as blocks or a low chair under your hands to prevent strain in the back
This is an inverted posture and is not suitable for those with high blood pressure or who experience ear and eye problems
Use your breath to relax into the posture – lengthen the breath out
Return carefully from the pose, using your legs and gluteal muscles to provide the strength to return to standing.
Avoid strain on your back at all times
More information about wide-legged forward bend is here: https://www.yogajournal.com/poses/wide-legged-forward-bend

Izzy Ixer BWY Dip, MCMI


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