Ekpada Hastasana

Asana name: Hand to Leg Forward Bend Sitting

Sanskrit name: Eka Pada Hastasan (sitting)

Meaning: Hand to Leg Forward Bend

General Benefits:
Improves the flexibility and blood supply to all the joints and muscles of the leg, lower back and hip. Stimulates circulation to the nerves and muscles of the spine. Tones and massages the abdominal region, hence also increasing the blood supply. Improved blood supply to the brain.

Benefits for Women:
Beneficial for menstrual disorders.

Therapeutic Applications:
Menstrual disorders. Sluggish liver. Diabetes

Taking the Position:
In sitting position, spread the legs to maximum distance, legs straight and firmly on the ground with toes upwards. Inhale and while exhaling hold the left toe with the right hand and encircle the left arm around the waist behind the back. Exhale fully bending forward bringing the forehead towards the left knee or shin. Maintain the asana, breathe normally.

Releasing the Positions:
Exhale and while inhaling release the left toe and raise the body from the hips. Join the legs back together, place the hands by your sides returning to sitting position. Practise on the other side.

Anatomical Focus:
The stretch along the left calf muscles, left hamstring and the back of the upper body, as well as the compression of the organs in the abdominal area.

Anatomical Awareness:
Focus on lower back, abdomen, hips.

Step the feet as far away from each other as possible. Place the right foot at a 45 degree angle to the left foot. (The angle may vary as per the convenience of every individual.) Square the hips to the left. Align the feet such that the heel of the left foot is in line with the arch of the right foot. Keep the legs straight. Relax in the final pose and breathe normally. Engage Jalandhar Bandha if the forehead is touching the knee. This increases the stretch in the back of the body.

Hunch the back or bend the left leg in order to touch the forehead to the knee. Bend the arms.

Precautions & Contraindications:
Surgery or joint injury in the legs, pelvis, lower back and waist. Slipped disc or sciatica. High blood pressure.

Variations & Tips:
It is important to experience the stretch in the left hamstring and lower back in this asana. If the hands cannot be placed on the ground, place the palms on the ankle or shin of the left leg. Make sure that you turn the hips and shoulders to face the left leg before coming into the asana.

Preparatory Poses:
Vajrasana Yogamudra Type 1. Ekapad Uttanpadasana. Ardha Paschimottanasana. Ekapad hastasana (sitting).

Follow-up Poses: