Standing Wide Legged Forward Fold Pose

Standing Wide-Legged Forward Fold Pose (front) - Iana Varshavska


Standing Wide-Legged Forward Fold Pose or Prasarita Padottanasana in Sanskrit (also known as Intense Leg Stretch Pose), is a standing forward-bend posture done with the feet apart. Of the many benefits that come with the practice of Prasarita Padottanasana, one main advantage is the intense stretch of the leg muscles. This happens because in Wide-Legged Forward Bend Pose the feet are extended and spread wide apart thus creating an intense stretch for the leg muscles. Prasarita Padottanasana helps boost energy in the body and hence can be included in flow yoga sequences.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1
Start in Tadasana standing at the middle of the mat turned so you have the length of the mat on each side of you.
Step 2
Step or gently jump your feet out wide.
Step 3
Turn your toes slightly pointing inwards.
Step 4
Place your hands on your hips. Press the outside of the feet down to the ground throughout this pose so you can see the arch of your foot being lifted and activated.
Step 5
Start folding your upper body forwards and down as deep as you can.
Step 6
Release your hands to the ground underneath your face.
Step 7
Activate the muscles in your legs, lift up your kneecaps and lift the sitting bones a little higher. This helps your pelvis to tilt a little further forwards which in turn folds your upper body deeper and the crown of the head closer to the ground.
Step 8
Place your hands so you have foot-hand-hand-foot alignment. Drop your head down in between your hands, maybe even the crown of your head touches the floor. Elbows are pointing back, bent in a 90 degree angle.

Benefits and Contraindications


Strengthens and stretches the inner and back legs and the spine

Tones the abdominal organs

Calms the brain

Relieves mild backache


Lower-back problems: Avoid the full forward bend

Blood pressure or a Migraine

Imbalance or Instability

Arthritis or Fibromyalgia

Photo poses in different angles

Modifications and Props

  • Beginner: Place your hands on a block if you yet can’t reach the floor.
  • Intermediate: If you want to sink deeper in this pose grab your index and middle finger around your big toes and splay the elbows out to the sides. Let your head drop down to the floor.


  • It is important to keep your back elongated and the front of your body open. If you feel at any point that you start to round your back as you are lowering further down, come back a little. Integrity and respect for your body’s boundaries are more important than how far you come into the pose.
  • If your hamstrings are tight, use a foam roller before the practice to massage the muscules and slightly bend your knees while in pose to feel that you are able to maintain a straight back more easily and use blocks under your hands.
  • To get the feeling of placing the crown of your head on the “floor”, place a block (or two) underneath your head.

Modifications & Variations

Iana Varshavska
Iana Varshavska
Website administrator

A digital marketer in love with yoga and everything that goes along with it. In 2021, her huge passion for yoga led her to yoga teacher trainings. After successfully completing her studies, Iana received her Yoga Alliance U.S. certification, left the corporate IT world and devoted herself to the development of Yanva. To be able to create the best online yoga space for yoga enthusiasts like her, Iana is constantly learning and improving her skills in various aspects of yoga philosophy, anatomy and biomechanics. Since 2021, she has continued to attend various types of teacher training, including yoga therapy, gives online and offline classes, and conducts local workshops for people who want to learn more about yoga. At the moment, Iana continues to work on her personal practice, improving her hand balancing skills, as well as developing her own training programs.