Wide-Legged Standing Forward Bend

Definition - What does Wide-Legged Standing Forward Bend mean?

Wide-legged standing forward bend is a yoga posture that stretches the spine, the backs of the legs, and the inner groin. It is also a slight inversion because the head comes below the heart.

In this pose, the legs take a wide stance with the feet parallel. The body folds forward, hinging at the hips to keep the front of the body long and the spine aligned. Hands can be placed on the ground, and the crown of the head may rest on the mat if the practitioner's flexibility allows.

The Sanskrit name for wide-legged standing forward bend is prasarita padottanasana.

Yogapedia explains Wide-Legged Standing Forward Bend

This posture offers a number of physical benefits, including:

  • Stretching the groin, hamstrings, and calves
  • Lengthening and decompressing the spine
  • Strengthening the shoulders, upper back, feet and legs
  • Relieving tension in the neck

In order to deepen this posture, the hands can be placed in different positions. The index and middle fingers can be hooked around the big toes, or the fingers can wrap around the outer edges of the feet. Additionally, the hands may be kept on the hips or put into reverse prayer posture behind the back.

This pose can be modified by placing blocks under the hands or placing the fingertips on a wall.

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