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Marichyasana is a forward-seated bend that is done as a part of ashtanga yoga series of asanas. Also known as the sage pose or Marichi's pose in English, this asana is dedicated to the ancient Indian sage Marichi, the son of Brahma. The Sanskrit name means 'ray of light' and true to its meaning, this asana focuses on the all round well being of an individual including the physical, mental and spiritual aspects of their life.

  1. Marichyasana (Marichi's Pose) steps: Correct way to practice Marichyasana
  2. Easy modifications for Marichyasana (Marichi's Pose)
  3. Precautions to take while practicing Marichyasana (Marichi's Pose)
  4. Benefits of Marichyasana (Marichi's Pose)

Here is a step by step guide to Marichyasana:

  • Sit in Dandasana (legs stretched forward with back straight). Put your palms on the ground and breathe slowly
  • Inhale and bend your right knee towards your chest. The foot of your right leg should be flat on the ground, almost touching your right hip. Twist your left leg a bit inward, ground your left heel firmly to the floor and push the big toe of your left foot away from your body. This will help adjust your overall posture
  • Exhale and turn your upper body a bit to the left side
  • Bend your upper body forward so that your right shoulder presses against the inside of your right knee
  • Now fold your right hand and wrap it over your right leg and spine. Then fold your left hand so it touches the right one. Try to hold your hands together at your back
  • Maintain the posture for about 30-60 seconds. Keep inhaling and exhaling slowly
  • Now get out of the posture slowly by freeing your hands and straightening your back
  • After getting out of the posture, straighten your right leg and return to the Dandasana position
  • Repeat the same asana on the left side

To make your buttocks, thighs and hamstrings flexible, you have to practice the following asanas before Marichyasana:

  • Staff pose (Dandasana)
  • Seated forward bend (Paschimottanasana)
  • Upward Plank Pose (Purvottanasana)
  • Half bound Lotus Seated Forward Bend (Ardha Badha Padma Paschimottanasana)
  • Three-Limbed forward Bend (Tiranga Mukhaikapada Paschimottanasana)
  • Head-to-Knee forward bend (Janu Sirsasana)

You may practice the following asanas after Marichyasana to relax your body:

  • Boat Pose (Navasana)
  • Shoulder pressing pose (Bhuja Pidasana)
  • Turtle Pose (Kurmasana)
  • Sleeping Turtle Pose (Supta Kurmasana)
  • If you are a beginner, you may find it difficult to hold your hands at the back while practising Marichyasana. In such a case, do not force your body. Fold your hands as much as possible. 
  • You can keep a folded blanket or a block under your buttocks to keep your hamstrings tight. This may increase the flexibility of your spine and shoulders. If you practice the asana consistently, you'll eventually be able to master it.

Before practising Marichyasana, you should take the following precautions:

  1. If you have lower back issues, do not practice this asana.
  2. Do not practice Marichyasana, if you have a shoulder injury.
  3. People who have asthma or diarrhea should not do this asana.
  4. Do not try to force your body while doing Marichyasana. Maintain your comfort and let your body ease into it with time.

Marichyasana can have some incredible benefits such as:

  1. It calms and relaxes your mind and body.
  2. Marichyasana helps stretch your spine and shoulders.
  3. When done on a regular basis this asana relieves fatigue.
  4. It also stimulates abdominal organs such as liver and kidneys.
  5. Marichyasana is said to be beneficial for relieving menstrual cramps 
  6. It is highly effective in reducing sciatica pain.
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