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Yoga Exercise - Half Spinal Twist (Ardha Matsyendrasana)

The Spinal Twist Yoga Pose, which takes its Sanskrit name from the great Yogic Sage Matsyendra, is one of the few Yoga Poses in the Basic Session that rotates the spine. Most bend the spinal column either backward or forward, but to become truly flexible it must be twisted laterally as well. The movement also tones the spinal nerves and ligaments, and improves digestion. Keep your spine erect and your shoulders leveled in the position. Breathe steadily. Twist a little more each time you exhale. Twist first to the left, as below, then repeat the sequence twisting to the right.

STEP 1: Kneel and sit on your feet with your heels pointing outward.

STEP 2: Then sit to the right of your feet, as illustrated.

STEP 3: Lift your left leg over your right, placing the foot against the outside of the right knee. Bring your right heel in close to your buttocks. Keep the spine erect.

STEP 4: Stretch your arms out to the sides at shoulder level, and twist around to the left.

STEP 5: Now bring the right arm down on the outside of the left knee and hold your left foot with your right hand, placing your left hand on the floor behind you. As you exhale, twist as far as possible to the left. Look over the left shoulder.

The Half-Spinal Twist or Ardha Matsyendrasana prepares the body for the full Yoga Posture. It is advisable to practice this pose under the supervision of a Yoga instructor.

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Article Comments
Monday 7th June 2004 at 4:23:51 AM  

in some books raised knee is to be clsped by right hand & left arm behind ur back as far as possible. this is good for diabetic patients since activate to release insulin. also pose has to be repeated with reversing rolle of legs.

Monday 26th July 2010 at 6:19:55 PM  

The compression of the spine improves nutrition to the inter-vertebral disks and squeezes blood out of the internal organs of the abdomen and pelvis, improving circulation to the spinal nerves, blood vessels and tissues.

Thursday 10th March 2011 at 9:55:35 AM  


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