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Ardha Matsyendrasana - Half Spinal Twist In Yoga, How to do Ardha Matsyendrasana - Half Spinal Twist In Yoga, Benefits of Ardha Matsyendrasana - Half Spinal Twist In Yoga, Precautions, & a note for yoga practitioners

Ardha Matsyendrasana – Half Spinal Twist In Yoga 

Ardha Matsyendrasana also known as the half spinal twist In yoga is a part of the yoga poses for the spine group of yoga poses. This series ‘Spinal Twisting Yoga poses’ is mentioned in the book ‘Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha’ by Swami Satyananda Saraswati under the Intermediate yoga poses category. In this article on Ardha Matsyendrasana - Half Spinal Twist In Yoga , we’ll learn how to do the Ardha Matsyendrasana - Half Spinal Twist In Yoga , benefits of Ardha Matsyendrasana - Half Spinal Twist In Yoga , breathing pattern, sequence, precautions, and notes for practitioners.

How to do Ardha Matsyendrasana – Half Spinal Twist In Yoga

  • Sit with the legs stretched out in front of the body.
  • Bend the right leg and place the right foot flat on the floor on the outside of the left knee.
  • The toes of the right foot should face forward.
  • Bend the left leg and bring the foot around to the right buttock. The outside edge of the foot should be in contact with the floor.
  • Pass the left arm through the space between the chest and the right knee, and place it against the outside of the right leg.
  • Hold the right foot or ankle with the left hand so that the right knee is close to the left armpit.
  • Sit up as straight as possible.
  • Raise the right arm in front of the body and gaze at the fingertips.
  • Slowly twist to the right, simultaneously moving the arm, trunk and head.
  • Use the left arm as a lever against the right leg to twist the trunk as far as possible without using the back muscles.
  • Follow the tips of the fingers of the right hand with the gaze and look over the right shoulder.
  • Do not strain the back.
  • Bend the right elbow and place the ann around the back of the waist.
  • The back of the right hand should wrap around the left side of the waist.
  • Alternatively, it can be placed as high as possible between the shoulder blades with the fingers pointing up. This position enforces the straightness of the spine.
  • Reverse the movements to come out of the posture and repeat on the other side.

Breathing pattern while doing Ardha Matsyendrasana – Half Spinal Twist In Yoga

  • Inhale in the forward position.
  • Exhale while twisting the trunk.
  • Breathe deeply and slowly without strain in the final position.
  • Inhale while returning to the starting position.

Variation of Ardha Matsyendrasana – Half Spinal Twist In Yoga

  • For beginners and those with stiff bodies or bulky thighs, instead of bending one leg and placing its foot by the side of the buttock, that leg can remain straight. 
  • Also, instead of one hand holding the ankle, wrap the arm around the thigh, hugging the knee to the chest.

Sequence of doing Ardha Matsyendrasana – Half Spinal Twist In Yoga

  • This asana should be performed after completing a series of forward and backward bending asanas.

Benefits of doing Ardha Matsyendrasana – Half Spinal Twist

  • This asana simultaneously stretches the muscles on one side of the back and abdomen while contracting the muscles on the other side.
  • It tones the nerves of the spine, makes the back muscles supple, relieves lumbago and muscular spasms, and reduces the tendency of adjoining vertebrae to develop inflammatory problems and calcium deposits. 
  • It massages the abdominal organs, alleviating digestive ailments. 
  • It regulates the secretions of the adrenal gland, liver and pancreas, and is beneficial for the kidneys.

Precautions while doing Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half Spinal Twist)

  • Pregnant women should avoid this practice. People suffering from peptic ulcer, hernia or hyperthyroidism should only practise this pose under the guidance of a competent teacher.
  • People with sciatica or slipped disc should not practise it. 

Yoga Poses For the Spine Series

Ardha Matsyendrasana - Half Spinal Twist In Yoga  is a part of the yoga poses for the spine group of yoga poses.

Spinal Twisting Yoga Poses are important for spinal health. Every practice should include at least one Yoga pose for the spine, preferably following the forward and backward bending postures. On the emotional and psychic levels, controlled twisting and untwisting represent a means of managing the knots and problems we encounter. These yoga asanas or yoga poses give insight and inspire a systematic approach to untying the tangled knots of life.

The following is a complete list of all the important Yoga Poses for the spine.

  1. Meru Wakrasana – Spinal Twist In Yoga
  2. Bhu Namanasana – Spinal Twist Prostration Pose In Yoga
  3. Ardha Matsyendrasana – Half Spinal Twist Pose In Yoga
  4. Parivritti Janu Sirshasana – Spiralled Head To Knee Pose In Yoga

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