[OOT-tan-AHS-anna] intense stretch pose; forward fold
calming * lengthens neck, shoulders, spine & hamstrings * promotes circulation to upper torso & head * activates inner thighs.
MUSCLES: gastrocnemius * hamstrings (gracilis, biceps femoris, semitendinosus) * piriformis * spinal muscles
- Lower back pain? enter the posture with bent knees; place your hands several inches in front of your feet or grab your forearms & allow your head to hang heavy
- Tight hamstrings? place 1 or 2 blocks several inches in front of your feet & below your shoulders to press your palms upon as you extend your heart forward while keeping knees slight bent.
- Weak inner thighs? place the narrow side of a block between your upper inner thighs. Bend your knees and place your hands alongside your feet. Work towards straightening your legs as you squeeze the block.
PROCEED WITH CAUTION:
- Be careful of all standing forward bends if you have acute hypertension, glaucoma or spinal conditions (i.e. herniated disc).
- Be mindful of body alignment.
- Do not arch your upper back and roll your shoulders forward.
- Do not lock your knees and round your lower back