Photo: Jenny Sugar
From my earliest experiences in a yoga class, Padangusthasana (Standing Forward Bend) found its way into my heart and quickly became one of my favorite poses. After a long day, there's nothing more delicious to me than bending over and feeling the stress pour out from the back of my body. I understand that not everyone shares the same loving sentiment for this pose and that plenty of questions pop up in the process! In need of a little inspiration to freshen up your relationship with Padangusthasana? Keep reading for a few easy tips to help you get the most out of this common pose.
- Let your head hang: For anyone that has struggled touching your toes or bending forward, lots of unnecessary stress can come up when trying to shift your body into this shape. By lengthening your neck and releasing tension, you're putting your spine in the perfect position to relax and sink deeper.
- Shift your weight forward: While keeping your legs straight, make a conscious effort to transfer the weight of your body over the balls of your feet. You should feel like your hips are lifting up toward the ceiling, while the front of your body drops toward your toes and slightly in toward your shins.
Keep reading for two more tips for Standing Forward Bend.
- Don't get out too quickly: Like with any other pose, once you sink in for a few breaths, you give your body the chance to experience its full potential. Be sure to stay for at least five breaths, and come up slowly so you don't get lightheaded.
- Grab what's accessible: Can't grab your big toes yet? No biggie! Reach for your shins or grab your opposite elbows with your hands while you're in the shape; you'll get the same beautiful benefits of the pose! If you're so inclined, then do a little sway from side to side to loosen things up.