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Yoga Styles & Poses


The forward fold yoga pose, also known as Uttanasana, is a fundamental posture that embodies a gentle surrender and deep release within the practice. In this pose, practitioners stand with feet hip-width apart, hinge at the hips, and fold forward, allowing the torso to drape over the legs while maintaining a slight bend in the knees to prevent strain. Uttanasana offers a myriad of physical benefits, such as stretching the hamstrings, calves, and hips, while also stimulating the abdominal organs and enhancing digestion. Beyond its physical attributes, the forward fold cultivates a sense of introspection and calm, encouraging practitioners to let go of tension both in body and mind, fostering a profound connection to the breath and a sense of inner peace.

How do you do Forward Fold?

Step 1.

You can enter this pose through a downward dog by walking your hands and feet together, or start standing and hinge forward at the hips.

Step 2.

Shift the weight onto the balls of your feet as you keep the torso long and tilt your tailbone up to the sky. Knees can be bent, allowing more flexion in the front of the hips, so that you fold from hips and not at the spine.

Step 3.

Allow the crown of your head to spill down towards the mat by relaxing your neck and shoulders. You can give your head a shake in the motion of saying “yes” or “no” to help release.

Step 4.

Hands can connect to the mat, fingertips in line with your toes, but allow your hands to fall where they fall, depending on your range of motion, aiming more to bring belly to thighs.

Step 5.

Use the strength of your core and back body to help with the forward bend, energetically drawing chin to chest.

Benefits of Forward Fold

Lengthens the hips, hamstrings, and the spine
Increases flexion in the hip joint
Allows lower back, shoulders, and neck to release
Dropping the head below the heart calms the brain to relieve stress, headaches, anxiety, fatigue

Variations of Forward Fold

Cup palms under heels and use back body to fold forward
Arm variations: Padangusthasana / Padahastasana / Ragdoll (interlock two peace fingers with big toes / hands under feet / grab for opposite elbows and sway side to side)
Place a block under hands or a folded blanket under heels to simplify the posture

Other Yoga Poses to Try

  • The Downward Dog yoga pose, known as “Adho Mukha Svanasana” in Sanskrit, has a rich history rooted in ancient yoga traditions. The pose finds its origins in the practice of Hatha Yoga, a branch that focuses on physical postures to

  • The 4-Limbed Staff yoga pose tones the arms, strengthens the core, increases upper body strength, and prepares the body for arm balances and inversions.

  • Forward Fold

    The forward fold yoga pose, also known as Uttanasana, is a fundamental posture that embodies a gentle surrender and deep release within the practice.


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