Urdhva Uttanasana or Upward Forward Fold Pose exemplifies as a classical and common standing forward bend posture in yoga which is known for restoring the overall body and mind. Urdhva Uttanasana is a Sanskrit name meaning ‘Up or Upward’ and the pose is often included in the Surya Namaskar Vinyasa following the Uttanasana pose. It is a common beginners’ level yoga posture, where props support encourages the performance. Loaded with countless benefits, Upward Forward Bend pose is quite easy-to-perform as well.
Top 7 Health benefits of Upward Forward Fold Pose
Stimulates Abdominal Organs
The asana gives a great massage to the abdominal organs, especially the kidneys and liver. Kidney and liver stimulation mean an enhanced functioning of the organs, toning and strengthening of the abdomen muscles, detoxification of the organs, improved blood flow, etc. It also massages the digestive organs that lead to having greater nutrient absorption abilities and a regular and consistent bowel movement.
Strengthens and Stretches the Lower Body
The pose strengthens your lower body and also increases the spine and hip flexibility. Practicing the pose stretches the hamstrings, calves, and hips muscles, and tones it. It strengthens the thighs and knees that provide a better support to the body. A strong lower body means an improved body posture and alignment, reduced risk of falling, and an increased stability.
Improves Functioning of the Nervous System
Healthy functioning of the nervous system means a healthy functioning of the overall body. One of the primary benefits of Urdhva Uttanasana is that it boosts the nervous functioning that leads to a proper brain functioning, prevents premature aging, good for cardiovascular health, improves memory, relieves body aches, boosts the immune system, enhances the learning capacity, and also improves the functioning of the lymphatic system.
Enhances Blood Circulation
Improved blood circulation means a healthy heart and a calm mind. An improved blood flow benefits the muscles, arteries, and also improves the oxygen supply to the whole body. It also provides a healthy skin, fights bacterial infection, stabilizes the blood pressure, relaxes muscles, lowers heart rate, and promotes cell growth.
Relieves Symptoms of Menopause
Menopause causes a lot of trouble for women, and practicing Urdhva Uttanasana helps in relieving the symptoms of menopause. It elevates the mood, strengthens the bones, prevents premature menopause, reduces hot flashes and night sweat, stables hormones, improves sleep, enhances memory, improves sexual drive, and helps with other physical and mental changes.
Reduces Stress, Anxiety, and Fatigue
Stress is a common issue faced by many of us today and these issues pave way for many other health problems. Practicing yoga pose relieves stress, and reduces anxiety and fatigue that improves the mental and physical health, elevates mood, and make you feel energetic. It also maintains the resiliency, enhances memory, focus, and concentration, and provides a restful sleep.
Gives Therapeutic Relief
The asana provides a therapeutic relief to asthma, sinusitis, high blood pressure, and osteoporosis. This relieves the pain, eases the symptoms of these issues, relaxes the body, and improves the overall wellbeing. The pose is high in therapeutic benefits and also encourages the integration of body, mind, and soul.
Steps to practice Urdhva Uttanasana
- Begin with being in the Tadasana position while keeping feet shoulder distance apart and parallel to each other.
- Press your feet against the floor. Exhale and then bend your torso folding from the hips and not from the waist.
- Do bend while keeping the back flat. Open the chest.
- Touch your feet with the hands, keeping the knees and head straight, and fix your gaze forward at a particular focal point.
- If you can’t keep the spine straight with the hands on the floor, you can keep hands on your shins or knees, or can also use blocks under the hands.
- Breathe gently and hold the pose for 20-30 seconds.
- Now exhale. When you release the pose, inhale, put your hands on hips, and slowly lift up the torso.
Precautions and Contraindications
- People with back, shoulder or arm injury, sciatica, hernia, slip-disc should avoid practicing the asana.
- If a person with a back injury is performing the pose then make sure you don’t bend your back much.
- Avoid the asana if you recently had a back, knee or hamstring surgery, and even during pregnancy.
Upward Forward Fold Pose is an amazing asana that bestows huge benefits from head to toe. Make it a regular practice to uplift all the mentioned benefits. Yoga gives you a new life that is better and healthier than before.