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Yoga Basics: your guide to the practice of yoga
Seated Yoga Poses arrow Seated Forward Bends arrow Seated Yoga Seal
Upavistha yoga mudra
Level of Difficutly: Basic
Print

Instructions

1. Seated on the heels in Hero pose, exhale the arms behind your back and interlace the fingers together.

2. Draw the shoulders away from the ears and squeeze the shoulder blades together to press out through the sternum.  Inhale and arch the chest up towards the ceiling. 

3. Keep the chest open as you exhale and hinge at the hips, lowering the forehead down to the floor.

4. Lift the arms up as high as you can keeping the palms press together if possible.

5. Inhale and lift the hips up, rolling on to the crown of your head. Press the arms forward and keep the fingers interlaced but allow the palms to separate.

6. Breathe and hold for 2-6 breaths, making sure to breathe into the belly and the chest.

7. To release: lower the hips back to the heels with the forehead on the floor. With the shoulder blades squeezed together, inhale back up to a seated position on your heels.

Benefits + Contraindications

Benefits: Seated yoga mudra opens the heart center and rib cage and stimulates the brain and nervous system. This posture stretches the back muscles, neck and shoulders.

Contraindications: Recent or chronic injury to the knees, arms, neck or shoulders.

Cautions:  Unmedicated high blood pressure and glaucoma.

Modifications + Variations

Modifications: Use a yoga strap between the hands.

Variations: Hold with the hips on the heels and forehead on the floor.

Vinyasa

Use one or more of the following postures to build a sequence leading up to this pose: Hero, Child.

Use one or more of the following postures to build a sequence ending after this pose: Child, Camel, Half Circle, Hero.