Yoga is a process of gradual learning which promotes both physical and mental growth and development. It is called Ardha Bhekasana in Sanskrit and helps in opening the chest, thighs, and shoulders together. It helps in stretching the thighs as you take the position with a strong focus on the shoulders and upper back.
It is initially challenging as it requires the bending of one knee towards your torso completely and stretches the thighs. The pose is highly beneficial for those individuals who are restricted from running, walking heavily and dancing due to flat feet. It helps in rectifying neck injuries and reduces the risk associated with it when practiced regularly.
How to Perform the Pose
The pose is difficult to master at once as it requires a high degree of flexibility. Here is the step-by-step guide to performing the asana:
- Lie flat on your belly and lift your head and upper torso while keeping your forearms pressed against the floor.
- Bend the right knee and bring it towards your buttock.
- Hold the foot by curling the fingers of the right hand beyond the toe tips. This helps in firmly holding the foot.
- Bring slowly your foot towards the buttock.
- Make sure that you keep the knee in the line with the hip.
- Take it slowly and push the toe only till it does not hurt you.
- As you perform this, keep your left leg straight and left hand fixed on the floor in almost 45 degrees.
- Press down the elbow and firmly place the left hand on the floor so that it supports you to lift the chest.
- Hold the position for 30 to 60 seconds and breathe.
- Perform the same even for the left side.
- It helps in stretching the front side of the body along with opening the ankles, groin, thighs, chest, abdomen, throat and deep hip flexors.
- It helps in strengthening the back muscles and makes the thigh muscles flexible and strong.
- It massages the organs of the abdomen and hence helps with proper digestion.
- It opens your chest and shoulders and hence helps in stimulating good energy.
- It is a great asana for athletes and sportsperson to stretch better after an intense workout.
Mistakes and Contradictions
There are a lot of people who are not able to do the pose due to uncomfortable clothing. It is important to wear comfortable clothes, like spandex shorts women, to stretch properly. Always perform the exercise on an empty stomach and morning is the best time. It is advisable not to perform the asana when one is suffering from high or low blood pressure, insomnia, migraine or injuries in the shoulder, back or neck.
How to Perform it Perfectly
It might be difficult for beginners as it requires flexibility and hence it is important to practice regularly at a slow pace. You can use a support to lift your upper torso and keep your forearm on the floor in front of the support. If you are not able to catch your foot, initially you can use a strap around your foot to pull back.