Go Forward!

Common Forward Fold Poses as demonstrated by our most recent Fusion Yoga Teacher Graduates, descriptions below.

Go Forward! Typically practiced in a Fusion yoga class, Forward Bends/Flexion  are one of the most recognized of our Super Six Spinal Movements. However, they must be done properly to get the most benefit while preventing injury. When we mindfully bend forward we open up the back of the spine, while backbends open the front side. The vertebrae from our sacrum to our cervical spine find much relief in careful compression and expansion, and our ribcage and all the organs in the torso benefit too. 

Forward bends allow us to stretch the back of the legs, hips, back and even our neck and shoulders as we exhale, reach forward, then downward. They help us wring out our organs as we surrender in the pose to gravity and release the weight of the head from our neck. When standing they are a form of gentle to enhanced inversions, as the head may come below, or in line with the heart (a must if any eye pressure issues). This allows the flow of energy and fluids downward to create a type of flush action as we come out of the fold and come upwards, rejuvenating our face and overall head.

Whether seated or standing, to prevent injury we must first ground down, lengthen our spine (Axial Extension) and engage our bandhas, our energy locks in the abdomen and neck first. Extend your head and chest upward and then forward then hinge at the hips, rounding the spine only after lengthening to your maximum into the fold. They all should begin first with a full Exhale of breath to make maximum space in the torso to fold.

Standing Forward Fold/Uttanasana - from mountain pose, knees slightly bent, descend forward using your legs and flat back to your fullest comfortable fold (Renee, front right)

Seated Forward Folds 

  • Seated Easy Seat/Sukhasana - Legs crossed then alternated for two folds to even out the hip stretch. Lead with hands and head, then abdomen towards thighs  (Coco, back right )
  • Staff Pose/Dandasana - Seated, legs extended straight our from hips, feet flexed, knees slightly bent to best degree to find a leg stretch (Michelle, back left)
  • Wide Angle Seated Forward Fold/Upavishthakonasana - Legs extended in a V-shape, feet flexed then fold into the center (not illustrated)


  • Plow/Halasana - Legs extended upwards, tailbone down, then to supported shoulder stand, slowly allow the legs to descend to your comfort behind your head, toes towards the floor (Milena)

Listen to your body and know your limits in the fold, not pushing too deeply to avoid potential injury. Then enjoy the the gift of surrender to find your deepest expression for the most benefits. We will revisit the importance of forward folds as relieving counter poses for backbends next week. Stay tuned...

Breathe. Move. Connect.


Fusion Owner, Registered Yoga Teacher, Reiki Master Teacher, R.N.

Share this Post