Understanding and Applying Matsyendrasana Yoga

Matsyendrasana yoga, the name given to this famous posture is derived from the word’Matsyendras’ which literally means ‘the lord of fishes’. Matsyendrasana is the fourth most popularly attested yoga posture and is the most accessible one to beginner yoga practitioners. This pose has a profound effect on physical, emotional and spiritual well-being and is suitable for people of all ages. Matsyendrasana is also known as Lord of the fishes because it is an excellent way to increase one’s flexibility and strength.

Matsyendrasana is the forward bending exercise or poses that include the sitting duck pose and the standing forward bend. It is an ideal exercise for the muscles of the lower back and thighs, but it is important to note that it is not the same thing as Bikram yoga, the popular and demanding practice of which is exclusive only for the yogis. Matsyendrasana may be practiced with both legs at a stretch and with the legs straight within the boundaries of the room. Matsyendrasana has an additional benefit for the practitioner as it is very easy to modify the pose to suit the needs of different levels of fitness.

The main goal of Matsyendrasana yoga is to relax the entire body and open up the chest and spine. Practitioners often use props to support the neck and upper back as they perform this pose. These props are known as avas and are held in the fingers between the index and middle finger. Other props used are the hind leg and thigh, the thigh bone or shin, the supported shoulder or hand, and the small of the back or the “solar plexus”.

Yoga originates in the Sanskrit language. “Matsy” means compact, and “sanskrit” means knowledge. Since Matsyendrasana translates to “seated posture”, it is often confused with the Sankrit pose called Trikonasana. The Sanskrit term for Trikonasana is “Triyan” and the word for Sankrit is “Chittavrittari”. So, when one refers to Matsyendrasana yoga posture, one must know the difference between the two.

Matsyendrasana is a wonderful way to warm up the body and it can also be practiced as a postures, in the context of an Asana practice or series of asanas. In fact, it is one of the most frequently performed asanas. It is done on the ground and one will be seated as the muscles of the body are stretched. Matsyendrasana yoga is often used in conjunction with other twisting poses such as the Vottanasana pose or Utthita Trikonasana pose. With regular practice of Matsyendrasana and other twisting poses, the hamstrings, quadriceps, and glutes will become strengthened.

Matsyendrasana yoga is designed to stretch the spine, which is particularly useful after sitting for long periods of time. The stretching of the spine after sitting in the position for many hours can result in pain in the lower back or even the buttocks. By stretching the spine, this posture will relieve the pressure on the lower back, which may result in the development of a slipped disc or a sprain. Another aspect of this posture is to lengthen the hamstrings, as they are at the front of the pelvis. They will become tight if there is not enough room in the abdomen for movement.

In the Ashtanga or Matsyendrasana yoga series, the torso is twisted so that the practitioner’s weight is placed directly on his or her toes. The challenge is to keep the weight of the body on the feet while maintaining a straight spine. The development of a straight spine and the resulting increase in strength in the back, shoulders, and arms is what allows an individual to perform the Ashtanga yoga poses with a degree of complexity and effectiveness. There are a number of different yoga postures, but all five of the primary yoga postures (Iyengar, Anuloma-Viloma, Bikram, Vastu, and Savasana) are useful for Matsyendrasana yoga. The twists in the Ashtanga series add additional difficulty by using repetitive bending and twisting movements that force the muscles to work harder than they would in other postures.

One of the primary goals of Matsyendrasana yoga is to promote a strong and flexible lower leg. The reason the legs are stretched is so that they can be flexed during standing poses such as Utthita Trikonasana and supported even more effectively when doing downward facing dog or utthita parsvottasana poses. There are three main reasons a person would want to perform the Ashtanga or Matsyendrasana yoga series. To strengthen the legs, to develop core strength, and to promote proper posture and balance, especially when it comes to the hips, neck, and upper body.

Types Of Yoga Poses


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