BENGALURU: Ardh Uttana Asan works on your lower back and abdomen. However this stretch is much more intense and your forward fold can greatly improve by regular practice. Here are the steps we take to assemble and achieve Ardh Uttanasan.
1. Stand in Shitila Tad Asan the upright mountain pose with your feet apart by 6-8 inches, inner lines of the feet parallel to each other. Now inhale, and raise your arms overhead. As you exhale bend forward at the hip joint.
TIP: If you have tight Hamstring muscles you can bend your knees.
2. Next slowly tighten/straighten your knees for a great stretch in your hamstring muscles. Place your hands on your shin.
Stretch your neck and look forward. Continue to push your shoulders and chest forward. Breathe normal. At every exhalation try to pull your abdomen in, thus pushing your diaphragm upwards towards the lungs. Hold the posture here for a few breathing cycles.
3. Meanwhile allow your lower back to sink downwards towards the floor creating a concave back. This effort can be aided by bending the knees slightly and by pushing the tailbone backwards. TIP: You are mobilizing the spine here by moving it in both directions- the upper spine is moving forward and the lower spine is stretching back.
4. Next move your hip joint directly above the ankles so your legs are upright at 90 degrees to the floor. You can achieve this by pushing your buttocks slightly forward. The buttocks have a tendency to push back.
People with slipped discs should not bend anymore (into padhastasan )than what is shown in the picture. They should terminate the posture here and return to standing.
To release the posture, bend your knees (for the safety of your back and knee joint) and slowly come up to standing. Raise your arms over the head for completion and then release them to your sides as you return to Tad asan (upright standing).
Ardh Uttan Asan is good for your abdomen. It takes care of bloating, digestion issues and gastric problems. It benefits the liver and spleen because of improved circulation after the contraction. This posture is good to adjust slipped discs.
Doctor or physiotherapist’s supervision is advised for chronic slip-disc sufferers.
Anshu Vyas Seetharaman is a yoga and fitness trainer at Sri Aurobindo Society, Bengaluru. (110 Gangadhara Chetty Road, Ulsoor) Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can watch Anshu’s Yoga videos on her You Tube channel- Anshu Vyas Yoga 365.