This forward bend asana rejuvenates the spine and tones the abdominal organs and gets rid of sluggishness.
Paschima means west or back of the body and uttana intense stretch or extension and asana posture or pose.
How to do Paschimottasana?
Sit with the legs out stretched with the feet together. Place the hands on the knees.
Relax your body in this posture. This is the starting posture.
Slowly bend from your hip, slide your hands down your legs and grasp your big toes between your thumbs and fingers. If this is not possible you may hold your heels, ankles calves or knees.
Hold this position and relax your back and legs allowing them to gently stretch.
Without bending your knees gently pull your torso towards your legs. Pull using the arm muscles, do not strain the back.
Try to touch your head to the knee. Be careful not to strain.
This is the final posture. Hold in this posture for as long as comfortable.
People suffering from back problems, slip-disc, sciatica, hernia should not practice paschimottanasana.