“Parigha” means a “beam” a “ray”. Since the posture resembles a ray hence the name. It is a predominately lateral stretch.
- Sit in Vajrasana. Inhale and raise your hips away from your heels. You are kneeling. Place your hands on your waists.
- Stretch your left leg out to the left side. Keep sliding your left heel out inch by inch until you straighten the back of the knee (keep knee soft in case you feel strain at the back of the knee). Once you reach your maximum stretch, try to rest your left foot and toes on the floor.
- Slide your left palm on your left leg. You are trying to touch your left toes. Grip your left leg, wherever, with your left hand. Raise your right arm straight up in the air. Right fingers are pointing towards ceiling. Feel a lateral stretch to the right side of your body.
- Exhale and while exhaling, externally rotate your chest to the right. Wait for a few seconds. Vertically, stretch your spine as much as possible and move your right arm along with your body to the left side. Turn your left palm to the ceiling and try to place your right palm on your left. Turn your head out from in between your arms and try to look at the ceiling. Once in the posture, keep your left knee fixed on the floor and push the left side of your waist up in the air.
- Hold this position for 20-30 seconds with normal breathing. Release slowly in reverse order and repeat on the other side.
- In case, you are not able to move your right hand close to your left hand, you can place your right hand on your right waist and look up at the ceiling and then at the back.
- Also, you should take some cushioning under your right knee to protect it from the hardness of the floor.
- While trying to move your head out from in between your arms, do not strain your neck.
- Abdominal region & waist: In this posture the pelvic region is stretched. One side of the abdomen is extended while the other side is laterally flexed. This keeps the abdominal muscles and organs in healthy condition so that it has oxygen rich blood flow. The stretch also tones up your sides and helps you get rid of love handles.
- Stiff Back: The sideways spinal movement will help people suffering from stiff back.
- Ankle: Parighasana works extensively on strengthening ankles. If at all you feel the squeezing effect on the stretched out ankle, then do not keep the toes on the floor. Let, only your heel be on the floor and let it slide further out.
- Hamstrings: Hamstrings and inner thighs get a good stretch thereby releasing stiffness from the groin.
- Sciatica: Parighasasana is recommended for releasing SCIATIC pain.
- Frozen Shoulder: Stretching the arm above your head helps work on frozen shoulders
- Avoid practice of this asana in case of severe BACK & KNEE pain.