Standing Forward Bend pose (Uttanasana)
The Story Behind the Name:
Uttanasana (Standing Forward Bend) (OOT-tan-AHS-ahna), is a calming posture for body and mind and requires patience.
- Ut = intense
- Tan = to stretch
- Asana = pose
The name Uttanasana comes from the Sanskrit words where “Ut,” means “intensity” and the “Tan,” means stretch or to extend or to lengthen out’, and in that way the spine is given an intense stretch, and āsana, means “posture” or “pose.”
Technical details and how to start:
- Stand in Samasthiti. Feet together, big toes touching, heels slightly apart.
- Inhale and lift up your arms all over your head, exhale and bend forward, until your fingers and then your hands touch the floor, bend your knees if you have to (position A). Head to the knees if you can (position B).
- Hold this position for five breaths.
- To come out of this pose, inhale and lift up your arms all over your head again and exhale into Samasthiti .
- Your head receives blood circulation as your head is below the heart.
- Provides oxygen to your hair cells and energises them.
- Relaxes your mind and relieves stress, one of the major causes for hair loss.
- Improves your digestive system.
- A good digestive system removes all toxins from your body. This results in the healthy growth of hair follicles.
- Bend the knees if you have to maintain length in your spine.
- Internally rotating your thighs will help you to spread your sitting bones, giving you more room to fold.
- Use the blocks if required.
- Avoid Uttanasana if you are suffering or recovering from a back injury.
- If in doubt about your medical condition check with your health practitioner before you start doing it.
People who decide to start practising Yoga and who are suffering from any cardiac problem, asthma, back pain, high blood pressure, neck, shoulder or spine injury or any other health related issue, should consult a doctor before starting any yogic activities and eliminate the positions that are not suitable for their particular case. Also, some particular asanas such as inversion asanas are not recommended for female practitioners who are menstruating.