Janushirasana – The Posture of Semi-Forward Bend


This posture is a preliminary to the Posture of the Forward Bend (Paschimottana Asana) which has been described elsewhere and has special importance in the practice of the Hatha Yoga. This posture brings the youthfulness and flexibility to all the nerves and muscles of the body. This relieves the tension of the spinal column. It agitates die blood supply to the body.

Janu means the knee. Shira means the head. Since the head is touched with the knee in this posture, that is why this posture is called Janu Shira Asana i.e. the Posture of the Knee and the Head. This posture is also called Semi-Forward Bend (Ekpada Paschimottana or Ardha Paschimottana).

How To Do Janushirasana

  1. Sit on the floor with your legs extended in front of you. Place the heel of the right leg on the origin of your left leg. In this position, the sole of the foot will be touching the left leg and the knee of the right leg will be resting on the ground.
  1. Slowly breathe out and try to hold the toe of your left foot with both the hands. Also try to touch head with the knee of the left leg. Bend so far as you are able to.
  1. This posture is deemed to be perfected when you are able to touch your nose with the left knee and are able to put the loop of your interlocked fingers across your foot.
  1. Hold your breath and remain bent till you are able to. Thereafter, slowly loosen your fingers and release your hands. Thereafter, straighten your bent back and head slowly.
  1. Repeat this process with the other leg. The extent, to which you will be able to perfect this posture, will depend on the flexibility of your muscles. Anyway, even if you succeed only partially in the beginning, do not get disheartened. You will be able to take your hands far, in portion to how much you are able to bend your back. When you have perfected this posture, you will able to touch your bent elbows with the ground, as is shown in the picture.

Also See: Tittibhasana – The Posture of the Firefly

Benefits of Janushirasana

This posture reduces obesity and potbelly. With the practice of this yoga pose, Sciatica pain is relieved. Ailments of the calves, knees etc are also cured. This posture is also beneficial, diabetes and is also capable of curing ailments of liver, spleen, intestines, etc. This posture also cures defects of the semen. Semen makes the forelegs, calves and arms shapely. Beauty-conscious persons – men and women equally – are greatly benefited with this posture.

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