Seated Half Spinal Twist (Ardha Matsyendrasana) Steps, Health Benefits and Precautions

Ardha Matsyendrasana meaning

The yoga pose Ardha Matsyendrasana or Half Lord of the Fishes Pose is consisted of four words (Ardha-Half, Matsya-Fish, Endra-King and Asana-Pose). That’s why; it is called as Half Lord Fishes Pose or sitting Half Spinal Twist Pose. The lord of the fish pose is a boon for the spine and spinal region and act like as rejuvenator for the spine nerves.Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half Spinal Twist)cc licensed ( BY ND ) flickr photo shared by Amy-amyjirsa_yogini

This seated spinal twist yoga pose requires extreme flexible body to be performed. In true sense, there is a need of rubber body to get the maximum benefits of the half spinal twist pose to ensure maximum elasticity. Ardha Matsyendrasana is good for spine as it helps to increase flexibility of spine, spinal nerves and the associated parts with it. This twist yoga posture expands your chest, relieves to neck and shoulders. In Hath Yoga, the half spinal twist yoga posture has been placed at 9th position out of the 12 Yoga postures.

The Yoga pose Ardha Matsyendrasana is named after the great yogi Matsyendranath, who is regarded as the human originator of Yoga. It is believed that all the yogic teachings that are now in existence come from Matsyendranath and his disciples. The contribution of Matsyendranath in Yoga is unparallel.

How to do half lord fishes pose?

The various steps to perform Ardha Matsyendrasana are given below. How to practice technically the half lord of the fishes pose is very very important to extract its required benefits.

  • First of all, sit on the ground with spreading your legs in front of you.
  • Bend your left leg so that the left foot comes close to your hips while the right foot is placed outside the left knee.
  • Place the left arm over the right knee and grasp the toes of the right foot with the left hand.
  • Now, put your right arm behind back around the waist in order to touch the navel from behind.
  • Try to look behind by turning your head towards right side.
  • The same thing should be repeated from the other side.

How to breath in Ardha Matsyendrasana?

Exhale while twisting the body into the final pose. After attaining the final pose, start breathing (inhaling and exhaling steadily). Inhale and come to the original position. Initially, it should be hold for few seconds; the duration should be increased gradually. Maintaining the position for longer period of time means accruing more benefits.

Half spinal twist pose limitations

There are some contradictions of the half spinal twist pose. Ardha Matsyendrasana shouldn’t be performed by people who are suffering from peptic ulcer, hernia and hyperthyroidism. Women should avoid practicing this asana after two or three months of pregnancy. People with heart and brain problems should avoid this asana. People who have spinal problems should  also avoid this asana.

Ardha Matsyendrasana for Diabetes treatment

The half spinal twist pose is just like a boon for those who have sugar problems. The diabetic patient should perform it regularly. Practising this yoga pose helps to instruct the beta cells of pancreas to secrete more insulin as Ardha Matsyendrasana stimulates the pancreas. Secretion of insulin ensures sugar control in blood thereby beneficial in diabetes.

Health benefits of Ardha Matsyendrasana

The important health benefits of the seated half lord fishes pose are detailed under below. The half twist spinal pose is one of the few yoga asanas, which provides a new flexible life to the entire spinal region. It only rejuvenates the spinal column, yet shows its positive beneficial aspects to the maximum systems of the body.

  1. This yoga pose is extremely beneficial for burning of fat from the abdomen. Thus, this pose is helpful in weight loss and obesity management.
  2. It provides wide range of flexibility to the spine.
  3. Ardha Matsyendrasana has been found beneficial in the treatment of backache, neckache and headache.
  4. It helps to remove any tendency towards round shoulders.
  5. It is beneficial in case of sciatica and slipped disc.
  6. It gives compression and stretch to the abdominal organs, thus facilitates massage, recirculates impure blood and tones up the associated nerves.
  7. It has been found useful in treating of ailments like indigestion, rheumatism, and constipation.
  8. It is effective in the proper function of adrenal glands, kidney and liver.
  9. The yoga pose strengthens the shoulder, hips and neck.
  10. It gives relief from stress and strain that occurs in the back due to forward and backward bending yoga poses.

Half twist pose precautions

  • One shouldn’t sit on the heel. In fact, place the heel in contact with the side of the buttocks.
  • Keep your back passive to harness the maximum benefits of the seated half spinal twist pose.
  • Twist your spine as per your flexibility.
  • Your shoulders should be at the same level while performing the final stage.
  • Your back and neck should be straight while doing this asana.

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