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But many daily activities also require you to bend sideways, including cleaning, gardening, and chasing after young kids! And if you play sports — particularly ones that involve jumping or reaching upward, like basketball, volleyball, or tennis — you already know how important it is to stretch the sides of your body.

In this special Yoga Workshop we start working on the sides of the body. These asanas stretch and tone the sides of the body and remove excess fat. They tone and massage the internal organs of the abdominal area and also increase the respiratory capacity of the lungs.
In this special class we will work out on side of your waist, support the abdominal wall and, with muscels of the other side, rotate the entire torso.

Benefits of Side Bending in Yoga

  • Side bends bring balance to your entire body. They lengthen the abdominal muscles, hips, and thigh muscles, while improving flexibility in the spine.
  • Side bends also stretch the muscles between the ribs (the intercostal muscles). These muscles can get short and tight in daily life, due to time spent sitting and slouching. Tight intercostals can weaken your posture, resulting in neck and shoulder tension. They also prevent a full range of motion in the ribs, which can restrict your breathing. Stretching out the intercostals will open up the ribcage and lungs, which will improve your breathing capacity. It will also relieve respiratory conditions, such as asthma, allergies, and colds.
  • Additionally, side bends stretch the abdominal muscles and digestive organs. This aids and regulates digestion, elimination, and metabolism. Women who are pregnant can also benefit from gentle side stretches, which will help to create more space in the torso for the organs and the growing baby.

Because of the asymmetrical balancing nature of side bends, do not practice these poses if you are currently experiencing very low blood pressure, dizziness, headaches, or diarrhea. Be sure to check with your doctor before practicing yoga if you have any injuries, health issues, or concerns.
The Sequence
Practice this sequence bit slowly. Never force your body into any position. If you feel any sharp, pinching, or jarring pain, come out of the pose immediately and rest. Always keep in mind these general guidelines for practicing yoga:

  • Move slowly in and out of the poses.
  • Keep your breath smooth and even throughout the practice.
  • Practice with an empty stomach.
  • Never strain or force yourself beyond your current abilities.

Keep the exact order of this sequence, as it has been organized to bring you the most benefits. Do not change the arrangement of the poses.