Parsvottanasana – Forward Side Stretch

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Parsva   “sideways” and uttana “extension.” In Parsvottanasana – Forward Lateral Stretch, the chest is expanded by pulling the shoulders back with the position of the hands. Corrects sagging shoulders and increases awareness of posture.

Technique

  1. Begin standing in Tadasana . Place your hands behind your back and bring your palms together, fingers down. Roll back your shoulders and elbows. With your palms together, gently turn your wrists so that your fingers point up in the middle of your back.
  2. Take a side step to spread your feet. Turn the right foot 90º, and the left 60º, to the right. Turn your head, shoulders, and hips to the right as well. Engage your knees and plant your feet firmly on the ground. Breathe in, throwing your head back to look up.
  3. Breathe out, slowly leaning forward from the hips. Relax your neck, lower your crown and face toward your knee. Hold 20 seconds and breathe normally. Breathe in and return to the standing position. Repeat with a lean to the left. Repeat again, but with your feet facing forward and inclined to the center.

Benefits

  • Calms the brain
  • Stretches the spine, shoulders and wrists, hips, and hamstrings
  • Strengthens the legs
  • Stimulates the abdominal organs
  • Improves posture and sense of balance
  • Improves digestion

Contraindications

Do not perform this asana if you have the following injuries or ailments;

  • Back Problems: Avoid full forward lean.

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