Prasarita Padottanasana

Prasarita Padottanasana is a part of the half-inverted yoga pose and standing forward bending yoga pose. It is usually practiced at the end of the standing poses. And just after Sun Salutation, the fundamental positions for the Ashtanga Yoga practice. The Sanskrit name has a specific meaning- Prasarita means separated. Pada means legs or feet. Uttana means intense stretching. The simple translation for Prasarita Padottanasana is “wide-legged forward bend’.

All you should know Wide Legged Forward Bend

Wide-legged forward bend yoga is one of the most effective and complicated postures. It is the same suitable for every level, men as well as women and beginner to advanced. Everyone can enjoy the benefits of Wide-legged forward bend – that increases circulation to the brain while providing a deep stretch for the legs, shoulder, back, and arms. And also improve strength, balance, and flexibility in the body.

Prasarita Padottanasana is a best practice before jumping into Sirsasana. This is considered as a good warm up the body. Prasarita Padottanasana has four variations- A, B, C, D comes in the Starting sequence of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga. It energizes and opens the three chakras Muladhara (root), Svadisthana(spleen or sacral) and Manipura(solar plexus or navel). 

In this article, we talk about – how to perform Prasarita Padottanasana yoga pose in a step by step explanation, along with the Benefits and Precaution attached to the pose.

How to do Prasarita Padottanasana (Wide-legged forward bend yoga)

  • First stand in Tadasana (Mountain pose) step the legs 4-5 feet (or 1meter) apart, while inhaling. Feet parallel and toes turned slightly in to protect your knees. (It is depending on the length of your legs)
  • Now, Place your hands firmly on your hips.
  • Exhale and stretch the spine and bring the hips forward, maintaining a straight spine.

For Variation A

  • Bring your palms to the floor by touching the ground with your fingertips only. If this isn’t accessible to you just yet, rest your fingertips on a block or take a slight bend in your knees.
  • Fingertips should be pointing forward.
  • As you keep stretching and you are down, bring the crown of your head to touch the ground in between your hands. And your elbows are bent at a 90-degree angle.
  • Engage your thighs, activating your quadriceps.
  • Hold for five breaths or 30 seconds to one minute. 

For Variation B

  • For jumping into variation B, maintain variation A, and keep your hands at hips and keep your elbows facing up or behind you. Engage your thighs and bring crown of head to floor.

For Variation C

  •  Interlock your fingers behind back loosely so as not to crunch shoulders. Bend forward and allow arms to come up off low back and press to ceiling above or floor past your head.

For Variation D

  • wrap your pointer and middle finger around your big toes. Bend elbows gently at a 45 degree angle and keep elbows drawing out to the sides. Keep your hips over your knees and use your abdomen to elongate your spine.
  • To come out of the pose, inhale and rise to fingertips, exhale and put the hands on the hips, inhale and slowly come up till in fully upright position.  Stand up straight and jump back to Tadasana and rest.

Benefits of Prasarita Padottanasana (Wide-Legged Forward Bend Yoga)

  • Prasarita Padottanasana poses stretches and strengthens the inner and outer leg, as well as the ankles
  • It is also beneficial to practice Mula Bandha (root lock) and Uddiyana bandha (upward abdominal lock) in this asana.


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