Yoga has been helping people live healthier and happier lives for over 5,000 years in India. It is now becoming increasingly popular all over the world, with people using different poses to help with different ailments from mental to physical.
From depression and anxiety to back pain and adrenal fatigue, each yoga pose has specific benefits for the body. But there is one pose that is less known but is considered by many to be vital for general health.
The Fish Pose, which is said to be called the “Destroyer of All Diseases” in traditional yoga texts, has the capability to restore the spinal health, which will lead to a better physical and perhaps even emotional health.
The Fish Pose – “Destroyer of All Diseases”
The Fish pose stretches the muscles of the stomach, the front and the back of the neck, between the ribs, and upper back. It has therapeutic effects for people who suffer from fatigue, anxiety, respiratory issues, constipation, and backache, as explained in the Yoga Journal.
The traditional version of the fish pose or Matsyasana is not for the beginner students, but it can be adjusted for students of all levels.
This pose is especially useful for people who work in today’s modern desk jobs, since it helps to open the shoulders and promotes flexibility and restoration of the upper body, which is often made stiff from sitting at in a cubicle or staring at phone screens for too long.
1. Lie on your back with bent knees and feet on the floor. (For advanced students: Keep your legs straight with the toes pointing to the ceiling).
2. Lift your pelvis off the floor and place your hands under your buttocks with palms facing down. Rest your buttocks on your hands.
3. Tuck your elbows and forearms to the sides of your torso
4. As you inhale, press your elbows and forearms into the floor and lift your upper torso and head to make an arch
5. Place your head back on the floor, depending on the depth of the arch, either the back of the head or the crown will touch the floor. (Only place minimal weight on your head to avoid hurting your neck).
6. Stay like this for 15-30 seconds, then exhale and lower your head and torso on the floor.
To modify the pose to an easier level:
– Support the back with a thick rolled blanket
– Make sure that your head and throat are resting comfortably
– Lower your chest towards the floor
– Put a thick folded blanket under your head
To modify the pose to a higher level:
– Bring your arms into Salutation Seal with the fingers pointing to the ceiling
– Start with legs straight on the floor, then lift them to a 45 degree angle and hold for 15-30 seconds
WARNING: This pose might not be the best fit for those who have blood pressure issues, migraines, insomnia, or a serious neck or back injury. Consult a doctor before trying.
Watch how the Fish Pose is done: