how to do wide angle forward bend in yoga

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How to Do Wide Angle Forward Bend in Yoga

Wide angle forward bend is a seated posture practiced often in yoga-asana classes. Like the other seated poses we’ve discussed, it’s suitable for beginners, and can be adapted for various ability levels.

👉 Before I go further, if you want to review my five key points about asanas, click here.

Yoga postures, also called poses and asanas, are the physical positions you practice. Asanas create flexibility, build strength, and develop stamina. 

Prefer videos? Watch How to Do Wide Angle Forward Bend:

POSE TYPE

Forward Bend, Seated, Hip Opener

OTHER NAMES

Wide angle forward bend, wide angle forward fold, wide V, dragonfly (yin), and the Sanskrit Upavishta Konasana

Click for the Sanksrit pronunciation.

Wide angle forward bend in Sanskrit

I’ve provided some benefits, contraindications, variations, chakra connections, and sequencing suggestions. Other yoga teachers and sites may list additional or varying information.

👉 Remember Key Point #1, there is no one singular way.

STEPS TO DO WIDE ANGLE FORWARD BEND

  1. Find a comfortable seated position and begin in staff pose.
  2. Extend your legs until they are angled in a V shape.
  3. Hinge from hips and slowly move your torse forward.

BENEFITS OF WIDE ANGLE FORWARD BEND

Benefits = By practicing this posture, the conditions listed can be improved.

  • Stretches inner thighs and hamstrings
  • Opens back side of your body and hips
  • Massages internal organs
  • Promotes digestion
  • Good for first, second, and third chakra balancing

CONTRAINDICATIONS OF WIDE ANGLE FORWARD BEND

Contraindications = A condition that the posture could make worse.

  • Second or third trimester pregnancy
  • Low back, hips, or hamstring issues
  • Avoid forward bends with back issues, herniated disks

VARIATIONS OR ADAPTATIONS

By altering the form of a yoga posture, you can meet the requirements and strength of each person. Yoga encourages you to practice within your capacity whether that means you need to increase or reduce the intensity.

Asana variations are not just for people with specific physical problems. They can help all yoga practitioners remain open to discovery. –TKV Desikachar, The Heart of Yoga.

  • Add a side to side stretch or twist
  • Do one side at a time
  • Sit on a folded blanket to elevate your hips
  • Roll a towel or blanket and place under your knees
  • Use a bolster to support your forward fold
  • Sit on chair and use 2 more chairs to support your legs
wide angle forward bend pose variation 1
wide angle forward bend pose variation 2
wide angle forward bend pose variation 3

CHAKRA CONNECTIONS

Wide angle forward bend has root, sacral, and solar plexus chakra connections. The root chakra is associated with the base of the your spine, legs, and feet. While your sacral chakra is connected with your pelvis, bladder, lower vertebrae, and hip area. Your solar plexus chakra aligns with your intestines, stomach, and diaphragm.

In upavishta konasana, you’re sitting on the ground (root), with legs extended into V (sacral), stretching low back (sacral) and massaging internal organs (solar plexus).

SEQUENCING SUGGESTIONS

Postures you could do BEFORE seated forward bend:

Postures you could do AFTER seated forward bend:

  • Head to knee
  • Seated twists
  • Seated forward bend

FINAL THOUGHTS ON WIDE ANGLE FORWARD BEND

Upavishta Konasana can prepare your body for other wide angle postures especially in standing poses like five pointed star, goddess, and standing wide angle forward bend.

Avoid forcing your chest to the floor, and locking your knees straight. Use props to facilitate the best version of wide angle forward bend you can comfortably do.

Practice it at night to relieve tension and calm down from your day. As you relax into the pose, it prepares your mind and body for rest.

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Shannon with Purple Lotus Yoga
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