Yoga Basics: Ardha Baddha Padma Paschimottanasana (Bound half-lotus forward fold)

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In this Yoga Basics tutorial, you will learn all about Ardha Baddha Padma Paschimottansana in Sanskrit, or Bound half-lotus forward fold.  This is a basic yoga pose found in many different types of yoga classes and has many different ways you can practice.  Here, Jennifer talks about “best practices” you can do to help keep your back safe and pain-free, based on the alignment you will find in most Ashtanga Yoga based studios.

Key points to remember when practicing your Ardha Baddha Padma Paschimottanasana:

  • Sit on the floor with your legs outstretched.
  • If you can’t sit up straight, try raising your hips up by sitting on a blanket, bolster or cushion.
  • Draw your belly button to spine (to engage your abdominal muscles)
  • If you can’t do a half lotus, cross one leg over the other in a figure 4 position, to your capacity.
  • Work your heel up towards your belly button as your body acclimates to the posture over time.  This is opening your hips and stretching the IT band a LOT.
  • You can forward fold over the extended leg to help stretch the hamstring
  • Once you have your heel close to your navel, try to reach the arm on the bent leg side around and behind your back, grabbing for the toe. 
  • If you can, grab the toe, if you can’t, you can grab the other elbow.
  • Forward fold, trying to keep whatever bind you have, working towards a forward fold with your bound half lotus foot.
  • If you have the half lotus bind, extend the arm on the extended leg’s side out to try to grab that foot.
  • Reach your forehead to the shin
  • Hold your shoulders down and away from the ears.
  • Hold this for several breaths.  

Remember, always keep your stomach muscles engaged and try not to tilt that tail bone out.  (this cue can reduce back pain)  

What does Reverse Table Top Do?

This pose is a great “heart-opening” pose, stretching the muscles across the front of your chest.  It also helps to stretch your shoulders. BUT, this isn’t all about stretching, you have to really engage the posterior chain muscles to lift the hips up.  In fact, the best secret to this pose is for you to really squeeze the glute muscles like you never have before and BAM, you got two more inches higher! This pose also stretches the tops of your feet and ankles.

Chattanooga’s Thrive Yoga and Wellness and Thrive Online

If you would like to learn more about Jennifer or if you would like to practice with Jennifer in person and you’re in the Chattanooga, TN area, check out www.Thrive Yoga and Wellness.com.  We offer almost 40 classes each week in a variety of modalities from beginners to advanced, to chair and seniors all the way to super physical HIT yoga. It’s a great studio in the suburbs with ample parking and the community vibe. 

Or if you’re not in the area and still want to practice with me, you can totally do it, virtually inside the Thrive Online community.  

In this video, I was practicing on my Mantra Lux Pro mat.  A Chattanooga Based Yoga and Lifestyle company. This post was written by Jennifer Dixon MBA ERYT 500 and Authorized Ashtanga Yoga Teacher.  She is the lead teacher in the Thrive Yoga and Wellness 200 hr Yoga For Every Body Teacher Training program: the Chattanooga area’s ONLY modular 200 hr Yoga Alliance approved Teacher Training program that allows you to train when YOUR schedule allows.  With two semesters each year and plenty of opportunities to practice and train year-round, this is the BEST yoga teacher training program for busy folks. Gone are the stresses about missed training weekends, you don’t have to worry about exhaustion and tears from super long intense weekend training every month–with the Thrive Yoga Teacher Training program, you train when your schedule allows and live your best life now.  Yoga Teacher Training should be fun, come practice with us and let us show you how! Another great perk of training at Thrive? You get an unlimited membership to the studio for one full year while you train! NO ONE ELSE offers this amazing deal (worth $1100!) and it’s the PERFECT way to get the training you want with the practice you need. Our next semester starts in August of 2019! See you on the mat soon!