Uttana Padasana gets its name from Sanskrit where “Uttana” means “Intense Stretch”, “Pada” means “leg” or “foot”, and “Asana” means “Pose” or “Posture”.
Uttana Padasana is also named as raised leg pose because in the final position the legs are raised above the ground thereby stretching the muscles of the body.
Uttana Padasana is a traditional yoga pose which stretches the muscles of the abdomen, thighs, calves and lower back.
It also helps In case of a lot of digestive ailments thereby strengthening the digestive system.
How to do Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose?
- The steps to do Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose involve lying flat on the ground or on yoga mat with your back on the floor.
- Keep your knees together and your knees tight and keep breathing.
- Raise your hands above your head while you start practicing Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose
- The toes and heels of both the feet should be kept together touching and toes of both the feet should point upwards.
- The next step to do Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose requires you to lift both your feet, while inhaling, from the floor almost at an angle of 45 to 60 degrees with the torso lying flat on the floor.
- Hold your breath in this pose for 20- 30 breaths or for as long as you can.
- While Exhaling, bring your legs back to touch the floor.
- Now, raise your legs again at an angle of 60 degrees from the ground.
- Retain the breath for a few seconds in this pose.
- Start to arch your torso a little on the floor on such a way that the lower back is arched slightly.
- For beginners, the chin should be tucked to the neck while the torso is raised.
- For those practicing the advanced Uttana Padasana pose or Raised Leg Pose, the upper torso should be raised as much as you can while the upper body is supported by dropping the head slowly and gradually to touch the floor.
- For both beginners and those practicing advanced pose, the legs will be raise at an angle of 60 degrees from the floor with the knees kept straight. Note that you should not bend knees while practicing this pose.
- This is the final Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose. Stay in this position for a few breaths or for as long as you feel comfortable.
- This completes one round of Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose. Practice the same for 4-5 rounds for maximum benefits.
- The pose where only the legs are raised at an angle of 60 degrees from the ground while the torso touches the ground is called Ardha Uttana Padasana or Half or Raised Leg Pose.
- Ardha Uttana Padasana can be performed by people who have difficulty in raising the upper body.
What are the Benefits of Practicing Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose?
- Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose is very beneficial for people suffering from Diabetes.
- It is also said to relieve Constipation with regular practice.
- Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose strengthens the whole Digestive system thereby relieving indigestion etc.
- It also relieves ailments of the back especially lower back pains.
- Uttana Padasana also relieves pain and problems associated with waist, hip joint and buttocks.
- It massages the abdominal organs and also helps in reducing fat from waist and thighs.
- It also calms the nervous weakness and brings a sense of calmness in the body.
- Uttana Padasana also relieves tension in shoulders, neck and throat.
- It relieves stress and anxiety.
- Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose is also said to improve posture.
- It also improves blood circulation in whole body.
- Uttana Padasana also improves the functioning of reproductive system.
Precautions While Practicing Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose
- People suffering with problems in Lumbar region should not practice Uttana Padasna or Raised Leg Pose.
- People who have had muscle pulls should not perform this Asana.
- People who have high Blood pressure should practice Uttana Padasana carefully or should practice under proper guidance.
- People with any back injury or who have gone undergone any recent abdominal surgery should not practice Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose.
Tips While Practicing Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose
- For beginners, who face difficulty while raising the legs should take the help of hands to raise legs.
- Knees should never bend while or during the time your legs are raised.
- A maximum of 5 rounds of Uttana Padasana or Raised Leg Pose should be practiced in one go.
- Do not over stretch or over exert your body while practicing this asana. Go as far as your body allows. If you can’t raise legs at 60 degrees from the floor, start raising legs at an angle of 45 degrees. It takes patience, persistence and regular practice to reach the final position of advanced pose. Start slow.