Padahastasana is a standing forward bending posture where your hands are placed under your feet. When translated from Sanskrit to English, "pada" means foot and "hasta" means the hand. To perform Padahastasana, start in a standing position, bend forward and place your hands on the floor. Then lift your toes and place your hands under your feet with your palms facing up. Bend your head toward your legs, eventually placing it between your legs. Consult your doctor before starting a new exercise program.
In Padahastasana, your abdominal organs are toned and your digestive juices are increased, says yoga master B.K.S. Iyengar. The compression of the abdominal area activates the liver and spleen, helping these organs function more efficiently. If you are suffering from bloating or gastric issues, this pose will benefit you.
When performing Padahastasana, your hands are placed palms up under the feet, allowing an intense stretch on the outside of the wrists. Many poses regularly practiced in yoga, such as Downward-Facing Dog, Cobra, Plank and Side Plank, require an intense amount of force to be placed on the wrist joint. Performing Padahastasana after these poses will help prevent injury and irritation in the wrist joint.
Relief From Aches and Exhaustion
Padahastasana slows down the heartbeat and relieves mental and physical exhaustion, says Iyengar. Padahastasana also effectively relieves a stomachache. Performing Padahastasana may help relieve abdominal and back pain associated with menstruation.
A Word of Caution
Less-challenging forward-bending poses, such as Uttanasana, should be mastered before attempting Padahastasana. Learn Padahastasana under the guidance of an experienced yoga teacher to ensure proper alignment. Padahastasana should not be performed if you have a spinal disk disorder, such as a slipped disk. Doing so will only aggravate your condition and could result in further injury.
- Light on Yoga; B.K.S. Iyengar
- Yoga: The Path to Holistic Health; B.K.S. Iyengar