HEAD-TO-KNEE FORWARD BEND POSE
Janu Sirsasana (JAH-no sheer-SHAH-suh-nuh)
BENEFITS OF HEAD-TO-KNEE FORWARD BEND POSE
- Stretches the hips, the quadriceps and the hamstrings
- Stretches the shoulders, the arms and the rest of the upper body
- Stretches the abdominal muscles
- Increases the flexibility of the spine and the lower back
- Has a calming effect on the nervous system
- Reduces anxiety
SUMMARY OF HEAD-TO-KNEE FORWARD BEND POSE
Head-to-Knee Forward Bend Pose, or Janu Sirsasana, is a pose great for all of the yoga practitioners as even if it is performed only to some degree, it can be worked on while it brings the same amount of benefits. It stretches practically the entire body, starting from the neck, ending at the muscles of the shin. It increases the stability of the spine and the lower back, improving its flexibility and preventing stiffness. Last but not least, it fantastically relieves the anxiety symptoms as well as induces the feeling of inner harmony and balance.
HEAD-TO-KNEE FORWARD BEND POSE TUTORIAL
1.) Begin seated on your yoga mat with your legs stretched out in front of you and your back erect.
2.) Bend one leg into the other so the foot is inside the inner thigh of the other leg.
3.) Keeping your back straight lift both arms above your head.
4.) Lower your chest down to your extended leg and grasp the foot or shin with your hands.
5.) Try to extend your back to intensify the stretch, keeping your forehead against your knee.
6.) To release the pose, simply slowly lift your body back up and come to the starting position.
HEALTH BENEFITS OF HEAD-TO-KNEE FORWARD BEND POSE
HEAD-TO-KNEE FORWARD BEND POSE FOR STRETCHING
Head-to-Knee Forward Bend Pose stretches practically the entire body including: the muscles of the neck, the spine, the back, the abdominal muscles, the hips as well as the muscles of the legs.
HEAD-TO-KNEE FORWARD BEND POSE FOR THE LOWER BACK & SPINE
Head-to-Knee Forward Bend Pose greatly increases the flexibility of one’s spine and the lower back, preventing any tension or pain being formed there. It also promotes a healthy posture.
HEAD-TO-KNEE FORWARD BEND POSE FOR REDUCING ANXIETY
Head-to-Knee Forward Bend Pose has a calming, soothing effect on the mind so it is a perfect idea to do the pose after a long, stressful day. It is relaxing and de-stressing.
Contraindications & Cautions
- Knee injuries
- Hip injuries
- Back injuries
- Neck injuries
- Shoulder injuries
- Pregnant women
- Severe lower back pain
Modifications & Deepening the Pose
REVOLVED VARIATION OF HEAD-TO-KNEE FORWARD BEND POSE
Starting from the standard Head-to-Knee Forward Bend Pose, bring the analogical arm up from the extended leg’s ankle to the air. Keep it extended and proceed moving it naturally up and to the side so that finally both extended arms are aligned together, the eyes gazing forward. This variation provides a nice twist to the waist and the spine as well as lengthens the shoulders.
HEAD-TO-KNEE FORWARD BEND POSE PREPARATION
If you are not yet ready to get into the full Head-to-Knee Forward Bend Pose, this preparation variation should be ideal for you. Starting from Step 3 from the Head-to-Knee Forward Bend Pose Tutorial, bring the hand of the opposite arm to the knee of the bent leg. Place it there lightly as the second arm, extended, goes behind the bent leg and the back. Let the force follow the movement of the arms, keeping the neck and the head aligned with the spine. Adjust the stretch level to your own goals, needs and comfort.