In yoga, the front of the body is
called the eastern side and the back of the body is the west; hence,
the name of this posture refers to the intense stretch of the back of
the body, from the hamstrings up the spine to the neck.
In addition to the hamstring stretch,
this pose offers the following benefits:
- Strengthens the abdominals, hip
flexors and lower back
- Lengthens the spine
- Stimulates the internal organs,
particularly the liver, kidneys and reproductive organs
- Improves digestion
- Calms the mind and reduces stress
Yogis with hamstring, hip or back
injuries should avoid this pose.