Take special precautions while doing any asana. If you are learning yoga, then take the advice of a knowledgeable person. Do not put any kind of force in the event of pain or unable to do so. Keep in mind that you will be able to succeed only with constant practice.
Brief Introduction Of The Uttanasana
- Uttanasana is referred to as the Standing head to Knee posture, Standing forward fold posture or standing forward bend pose.
- It is also called the intense stretch pose or forward bending pose. In the Sanskrit language Ut means Powerful, Tan means To stretch and Asana means Posture.
- It is rather pronounced as OOT-tan-AHS-ahna. Yoga experts believe it to be a powerful stretch pose.
- Practicing it regularly does offer your body some amazing benefits. It rejuvenates and heals your body.
- While performing this asana, your head gets below your heart. This enhances better blood circulation in your head rather more than your feet. Thus your body cells experience a sudden rush of energizing and revitalizing oxygen crucial for physical development.
How To Do The Uttanasana?
Preparatory steps to follow before doing Uttanasana
- This asana is better practiced on an empty stomach and after cleaning your bowels. You should have your meals at least 4-6 hours before you start to practice it. This timeframe allows your food to get fully digested and provide you with the desired energy to give your best. You can practice it early in the morning or in the evening depending on your availability.
- This is an intermediate level asana that belongs to the Hatha Yoga style. As a beginner, you are advised to practice it for about 15-30 seconds at a stretch. No repetitions will be essential. It strengthens your thighs, knees while stretching your calves, hamstrings and hips.
Steps to perform Utkatasana pose
- Use a yoga mat and strand straight on it. Place both your hands on the hips and take a deep breath.
- Now exhale and soften gently your knees. Then bend forward, with your hips in a folding position.
- Counterbalance your body weight. To achieve this position, move tailbone your and hips slightly backward while moving your body forward.
- While doing this, soften your knees. Your buttocks should point upwards, while hips should move forward within upper thighs.
- Place your hands on the floor near your feet, making them parallel to one another. Place your middle and second pointing forwards. Allow your chest to float right over your feet. Then widen space between pubis and chest bone region. Try to feel the fold. Now, stretch yourself right from the hip bone. In case you sense it from your lower back, then probably there is something wrong with your step.
- The stretch should be felt in your hamstrings also. In case you fail to feel it, then extend your knees further.
- Turn thighs inwards to root yourself within your heels. It will provide you with better alignment.
- Dangle your head in a manner that your crown should touch the ground. Look through the legs. Stay in this pose for a few seconds.
- To release from this hold, contract your abdomen muscles and the core. Take a deep breath. Place your hands on the hip region and rise slowly. Your back should derive an elongation. Maintain some distance between chest bone and pubis. Then stand up slowly.
Tips for beginners to practice correctly Uttanasana
- Being a beginner, you are sure to face difficulty to increase your stretch. You can make things easier by bending gently your knees. Imagine that sacrum is sinking deep within your pelvis back part. Reduce distance present between pubis and tailbone. You are likely to feel some resistance. Now, push your thighs top part backward. Then, press heels downwards and straighten your knees. As you straighten them avoid locking your knees.
Advanced Uttanasana pose variation
- You can increase the stretch in your legs and back. To achieve this, you need to lean forward. Pull your heels for about half an inch off the ground to raise your body on your feet balls. Then, pull your groins inner part into your pelvis. Straighten your heels back to the ground from groin height.
What are the preparatory poses you can do before starting Uttanasana pose?
- Supta Padangusthasana
- Janu Sirsasana
- Adho Mukha Svanasana
Follow-up poses you can practice after completing the Uttanasana pose
- Seated forward bends
- Standing poses
Benefits Of The Uttanasana
- Your hamstrings, calves, hips and back get a good stretch by doing this asana.
- It provides relief to insomnia and headache.
- It helps provide relief to anxiety as well as calms your mind and body.
- It strengthens your knees and thighs.
- It keeps your liver and kidneys in good shape.
- The bend provides good massage to your digestive organs, thereby helping to improve digestion.
- It alleviates menstrual and menopause problems.
- It helps treat various types of health ailments like osteoporosis, sinusitis, infertility, asthma, high blood pressure, etc.
Precautions To Be Taken While Doing The Uttanasana
You need to keep in mind several points of caution while practicing this asana to be safe.
You should do this asana if you suffer from the following problems:
- Detached retina or Glaucoma
- Tear taking place in the hamstrings
- Lower back injury
If you suffer from a back injury, perform this asana by bending your knees. You can also perform the Ardha Uttanasana pose. For this, you need to use your hands and place them against the wall in a manner to make it parallel to the ground. Your legs should be made perpendicular to the torso.
- Practicing Uttanasana regularly helps to stretch your body completely.
- It also covers every part of your body, right from your feet soles to your legs back part.
- Moreover, it stretches and strengthens your upper, mid and lower part of your back. Even your neck, scalp, foreheads and eyebrows are benefitted in this process.
- The asana also helps stretch your muscles located in the different parts of your body along with connective tissues. Without your realization, you are likely to witness immense benefits in your body.
- If you still do not feel confident, you can perform this asana under the guidance of a qualified yoga expert.
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