How to practice: Prasārita Pādottānāsana A, B, C, D (Wide-Legged Forward Bend)

by Delight Yoga

Six simple Fundamental Asanas (postures) build the foundation of an Astanga Vinyasa Yoga practice. They are often called “standing positions” because they are composed of six relatively easy standing asanas. Prasārita Pādottānāsana A, B, C, D is the fifth of these fundamental postures. 

The six fundamental postures are right at the beginning of every Astanga Yoga practice. No matter how advanced you are, after five rounds of Surya Namaskara A and B, you start with these postures. Here, you carry the rhythm you have set up in Surya Namaskara A & B in a flow from asana to asana. With this solid basis, you are perfectly prepared to enter whichever series you are practising. 

Prasārita Pādottānāsana A Instructions
 

1. ekam
Inhale, step right foot back, feet parallel, hands to waist
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

2. dve
Exhale, hands to the floor
Dhristi: in the middle of the eyebrows (bhrūmadhye)

- Inhale, lift head, extend the spine
Dhristi: 
in the middle of the eyebrows (bhrūmadhye)

3. trīṇi
Exhale, crown of the head reaches to the floor
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

- 5 breaths, Prasārita Pādottānāsana A
  Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

4. catvāri
Inhale, lift head, extend the spine
Dhristi: to the nose (bhrūmadhye)

- Exhale, hold

5. pañca
Inhale, hands to the waist, lift up
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

- Exhale, step to the front of the mat, big toes touch Samasthitiḥ
  Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

Prasārita Pādottānāsana B Instructions
 

1. ekam
Inhale, step right foot back, extend arms out
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

2. dve
Exhale, hands to waist
Dhristi: in the middle of the eyebrows (bhrūmadhye)

- Inhale, lift head, extend the spine
Dhristi: in the middle of the eyebrows (bhrūmadhye)

3. trīṇi
Exhale, crown of the head reaches to the floor
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

- 5 breaths, Prasārita Pādottānāsana B
  Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

4. catvāri
Inhale, lift up
Dhristi: to the nose (bhrūmadhye)

- Exhale, hold

5. pañca
Inhale, extend arms wide 
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

- Exhale, step to the front of the mat, big toes touch Samasthitiḥ
  Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)
 

Prasārita Pādottānāsana C Instructions

1. ekam
Inhale, step right foot back, arms wide
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

2. dve
Exhale, interlace fingers behind back (palms down)
Dhristi: in the middle of the eyebrows (bhrūmadhye)

- Inhale, open chest, lift sternum, extend the spine
Dhristi: in the middle of the eyebrows (bhrūmadhye)

3. trīṇi
Exhale, crown of the head reaches to the floor, let hands fall over the head, reaching for the floor
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

- 5 breaths, Prasārita Pādottānāsana C
  Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

4. catvāri
Inhale, lift up
Dhristi: to the nose (bhrūmadhye)

- Exhale, hold, hands stay behind back

5. pañca
Inhale, extend arms wide
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

- Exhale, step to front of the mat, big toes touch Samasthitiḥ
  Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)
 

Prasārita Pādottānāsana D Instructions

1. ekam
Inhale, step right foot back, hands to waist
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

2. dve
Exhale, first three fingers wrap around big toes
Dhristi: in the middle of the eyebrows (bhrūmadhye)

- Inhale, lift head, extend spine
Dhristi: in the middle of the eyebrows (bhrūmadhye)

3. trīṇi
Exhale, crown of the head reaches to the floor, bend at elbows
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

- 5 breaths, Prasārita Pādottānāsana D
  Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

4. catvāri
Inhale, lift head, straighten the spine
Dhristi: to the nose (bhrūmadhye)

- Exhale, hold

5. pañca
Inhale, hands to the waist, lift up
Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)

- Exhale, step to front of the mat, big toes touch Samasthitiḥ
  Dhristi: to the nose (nāsāgre)
 

Prasārita Pādottānāsana A, B, C, D Benefits


- Strengthens and stretches the inner and back legs, feet and ankles

- Relieves upper body tension, elongates the spine and core

- Develops the hamstring and abductor muscles (inner thighs)

- Tones the abdominal organs

- Increases digestive powers

- Calms the brain and removes fatigue

- Relieves mild backache