Purvottanasana is known as Upward Plank pose or “Intense Eastward Facing Stretch”. The East is associated with new beginnings and renewal stemming from the direction of the rising sun. Don’t let the word “stretch” mislead you, however. This pose also requires strength from the legs, butt, back, core, shoulder and arm muscles and can be quite intense, especially if held for more than five breaths.
- Strengthens shoulders, triceps, wrists
- Strengthens glutes (butt) and hamstrings (back of legs)
- Strengthens abdominal and back muscles
- Strengthens wrists
- Stretches chest, shoulders and biceps
- Stretches front ankles
- Improves mood
- Mild depression
- Mild fatigue
AVOID THIS POSE IF YOU HAVE:
- Wrist injury (you can do the pose, but with a closed fist instead of an open palm)
- Neck injury (you can do the pose, but support your head on a chair or against a wall, avoiding letting the head drop)
If your shoulders are tight, rotate the position of your palms so that your fingertips face out to the sides or backwards. If you have a wrist injury or sore wrists, you can replace open hands with closed fists, supporting your body weight on the tops of your closed fingers and knuckles.
FOR STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTIONS OF THIS POSE GO TO: