Ahh, the power of a forward fold becomes transparent when one has practiced this simple asana for many a time. Each time, and with each practice, simply letting your head reach for your knees has a profound effect on your mental and physical tension in your whole body. Did you know some of the benefits of uttanasana or intense forward stretch?
- Reduces depression if practiced regularly
- cures insomnia and relieves fatigue
- increases blood flow to the brain, soothing the brain cells and sympathetic nervous system
- regulates blood pressure
- relieves migraines and stress-related headaches
- tones the abdominal organs
- relieves stomachaches by neutralizing acidity
- strengthens the stretches the hamstring muscle
- increases the flexibility of the hip joint
- strengthens the knee joint and it’s surrounding tissue and muscles
This power asana is in a series called the sun salutes, and because of it’s effectiveness we practice uttanasana many times during the sun salutes. As a teacher, one thing I encourage my students to do is a forward fold against the wall. Here the upper back can rest against the wall, with the head supported by blocks. Holding an asana or posture for 1-3 minutes increases the power, especially because it is so soothing. Go ahead, and try it, and see what a forward fold can do for you!!
See you on the mat,