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Upavistha Konasana – Wide Angle Seated Forward bend.

July 9, 2013

Upavistha Konasana – Wide Angle Seated Forward bend.

 Upavistha Konasana forward bend

  • Begin from Dandasana – Staff Pose
  • Gently stretch one leg out at a time to each respective side as wide as is possible and is comfortable
  • Place the hands or fingertips behind the hips near the sit bones to extend the legs with the feet flexed and toes pointing upward
  • Intentionally rotate the thighs inwards towards each another
  • Elongate the spine from the base of the spine up and through to the crown of the head
  • With the hands scoop the buttocks out and back to facilitate the hips and the pelvis to tilt forward – this in turn assists to lengthen the spine
  • One can sit upright with the hands on the floor behind the hips intentionally activating the legs
    OR
  • Stretch as far forward as is possible moving from the hips and leading with the chest stretching the arms forward and aligning the head with the arms
  • Hold for 5 – 10 breaths
  • To release from the forward bend gently walk the hands back and on the inhalation return to an upright seated position
  • Bend the legs slightly and lean back a little
  • Place the hands under the knees or thighs and bring the bent legs together and return to Dandasana.

 Upavishta Konasana complete forward bend

Counterpose / Pratikryasana: 

  • Dandasana – Staff Pose
  • Tarasana – Star Pose or Relaxed Forward Bend
  • Paschimottanasana – Intense seated forward bend – Ideal for advanced practitioners
  • Baddha Konasana – Cobbler Pose
  • Savasana – Corpse Pose

 

Benefits: 

  • Stretches and opens the hip area
  • It is a boon for pregnant women to facilitate the opening of the hips in preparation for child birth
  • Stretches and tones the adductors / inner thigh muscles
  • Increases blood circulation to the pelvis, abdominal area and the lower back
  • Relives Sciatic pain
  • Activates and tones the kidneys and maintains a healthy Urinary system
  • Helps to relieve abdominal pain associated with menstrual cramps

 

Cautions & Modifications: 

  • If the stretch proves too strenuous on the hips and the hamstrings then:
  • Sit on a block or a foam cushion to help lift the spine further and to alleviate strain on the leg muscles
  • Shorten the distance between the legs to ease the stretch
  • For knee issues unlock the knee joints
  • Place a folded blanket or rolled hand towel under the knees
  • Bend the legs slightly if necessary whilst still rotating the thighs inwards
  • Advanced practitioners can stretch the arms outwards holding onto the big toes of each foot in the forward bend
  • For Post Natal women it is advisable not to practice Upavistha Konasana initially when resuming yoga practice as the hips need to adjust to resume a “natural” position prior to pregnancy. Therefore initially practice asanas / poses that are counter hip openers

 Upavishta Konasana holding toes

Chakra Association:                       

Muladhara, (Root Center), especially if engaging in Mula Bandha,(Root lock), Svadisthana, (Sacral Center), working on the hip area, if in an advanced practice, Ajna Chakra when one moves into a complete forward bend with the forehead gently pressing on the mat / floor.

 

Yours in Yoga,

Juanita.

_______________________________________

Juanita CaprariJuanita Caprari is a certified Yoga teacher and Public Relations Practitioner. She started her Yoga practice in 2002. She has completed two Yoga Teacher Training Courses, the last one through Ananda Kutir Ashram and has been teaching Yoga since 2007. jcaprari@mweb.co.za or visit the website www.yogamala.co.za or www.facebook.com/YogaMalaCapeTown

 

 

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