Seated Forward Bend (Paschimottanasana)

A Vata-Pacifying Yoga Pose
Intense Westward StretchIntense Westward Stretch 2Intense Westward Stretch 3

Sit in a pike position, with an elongated spine and legs stretched out in front of your body. Engage the legs by hugging the muscles to the bones and flexing the feet. On an inhalation, reach the arms overhead and exhale to hinge at the hips, extending the torso over the legs. Pay careful attention to your spine. The spine should be elongated in this pose as opposed to round. Place your hands on the thighs, calves, or feet. It is more important to have a long extended spine in this pose than trying to touch your toes.

Vata Focus:

Hug muscles to bones to stabilize the lower body, breathe fully into the belly, and bring your internal gaze to the heart.

Benefits:

Stretches the hamstrings, calms the mind, tones the spine, and massages the abdominal organs.