In Sanskrit, supta means ‘lying down’, pada means ‘”foot”, and angustha is the big toe. (Yoga the Path to Holistic Health, BKS Iyengar)
Before I started practicing yoga regularly, back pain was something I dealt with frequently. Whether because of poor posture or because of menstruation, it would just not go away. Then I discovered the supta padangusthasana and back pain is now a thing of the past. You can practice this any time and any where. I sometimes practice this when I’m procrastinating or just too lazy to start a dynamic warm up. Also, after a whole day of standing because this pose magically stretches out the tiredness. When I have the luxury of time, I like to work with different variations of this posture while watching something interesting on TV!
The benefits of the Supta Padangusthasana are:
- Aligns the pelvic area thereby relieving backache.
- Stretches the hamstrings and calf muscles.
- Strengthens the knees and ankles.
- Tones and relieves pain from the lower back and spine.
- Relieves sciatic pain.
- Helps in relieving menstrual pain. (However, don’t practice this while you”re menstruating.)
While the picture above depicts the classical asana, I prefer practicing with props. The below video demonstrates how you can make this asana work better for you with the use of a few props.
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