Ardha Matsyendrasana – Half Lord of the Fishes Pose
ardha = half · Matsyendra = king of the fishes (matsya = fish indra = ruler), a legendary teacher of yoga
Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half Lord of teh Fishes Pose) whose name originates from the great yogi Matsyendranath, who founded Hatha Yoga, can be called the half spinal twist posture or Vakrasana (meaning twist).
This yoga pose generally appears as a twisting of the seated spine, with many variants and is one of the twelve basic yoga postures (asanas) in many Hatha Yoga systems. In this yoga pose, the spine receives its maximum twist in the upper back, with the thighs placed on top of each other and with the support of the arms.
Benefits of Ardha Matsyendrasana pose
- Increases the elasticity of the spine, tones your nerves and improves the functioning of the spinal cord.
- Relieves back pain and stiffness between the vertebrae.
- Relieves menstrual discomfort, fatigue and sciatica.
- Stretches shoulders, hips and neck.
- Stimulates the ability to digest.
- Helps against asthma and infertility.
- Stimulates the liver and kidneys.
- Helps in the prevention of diabetes, if performed systematically.
Traditional texts say that Ardha Matsyendrasana increases appetite, destroys most deadly diseases and awakens kundalini.
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Contraindications and Precautions when performing Ardha Matsyendrasana
Do not do this pose if you:
- are pregnant;
- have hyperthyroidism;
- have had surgery on your abdominal area.
Perform this asana under the supervision of an experienced teacher, if you:
- have a back or spine injury;
- have a hernia or ulcer.
Cautions when practicing Ardha Matsyendrasana:
- Do not force the column to twist, twist according to your flexibility.
- Do not sit on your heel. Your heel should be placed in contact with the side of the buttocks.
- Keep your back and neck straight while performing the pose.