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How to do Parsva Sukhasana (Sideways Seated Pose)

Parsva Sukhasana, also known as “Easy Pose with a Side Stretch” or “Sideways Seated Pose,” is a variation of the traditional Sukhasana (Easy Pose) with an added lateral stretch. This gentle stretch can help relieve abdominal discomfort due to overindulging during the holidays. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to practice Parsva Sukhasana.

1. Begin by sitting on the floor or on a yoga mat with your legs extended in front of you.

2. Move into a into a cross-legged position and sit up tall with your spine straight.

3. Rest your hands, palms up, on your knees.

4. Adjust your sitting bones so that they are grounded and evenly distribute your weight on both hips.

5. Inhale and draw your shoulders back, opening your chest.

6. Exhale as you relax your face and jaw, keeping the neck aligned with the spine.

7. Close your eyes and focus on your breath.

8. Inhale and lengthen your spine.

9. Place your left hand, palm down, on the floor with your elbow slightly bent.

10. As you exhale, Reach your right arm up and overhead and lean to the left side. Actively lengthen through the right side.

11. Keep your sit bones grounded and maintain an even weight distribution between both hips.

12. Ensure that your spine stays straight and that the stretch is felt along the right side of your torso.

13. Breathe deeply and smoothly as you hold the stretch.

14. With each inhale, focus on lengthening your spine, and with each exhale, explore the stretch on the right side. Hold for 5 to 10 breaths.

15. Inhale to come back to the center with hands resting, palms up, on knees. Exhale.

16. Repeat the stretch on the other side.

Tips

• If sitting cross-legged is uncomfortable, you can sit on a folded blanket or cushion for added support.

• Modify the stretch based on your flexibility, and gradually deepen it over time.

• Listen to your body and avoid any pain. The stretch should be gentle and within a comfortable range of motion.

• As with any yoga pose, it’s advisable to consult with a yoga instructor or healthcare professional, especially if you have any pre-existing medical conditions or injuries.  

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