Ardha Matsyendrasana

Ardha Matsyendrasana Steps, And Benefits

Ardha Matsyendrasana, Half Lord of the Fishes Pose, Half Spinal Twist Pose, or Vakrasana is an asana. Sanskrit: अर्धमत्स्येन्द्रासन; Ardha – Half, Matsyendra – King of the fish, Asana – Pose; Pronounced As ARE-dah MAT-see-en-DRAHS-anna

This asana is called after the yogi Matsyendranath. The title is taken from the Sanskrit phrases ‘Ardha, which means half, ‘Matsya’, which means fish, ‘Indra’, which stands for a king, and asana, which means posture.

This asana can be called Vakrasana too. ‘Vakra’ means twisted in Sanskrit. Some other names for this asana are the Half Lord of the Fishes Pose and the Half Spinal Twist. It is a seated spinal twist and has a whole lot of variations.

This pose is, without doubt, one of the 12 fundamental asanas used within the Hatha Yoga program.

What You Should Know Before You Do This Asana

This asana should be practiced both very first thing within the morning or a minimum of 4 to 6 hours after a meal. Your abdomen and bowels should be empty whenever you do this asana. The meals should be digested so that there’s sufficient energy to expend during the pose.

  • Level: Basic
  • Style: Hatha Yoga
  • Duration: 30 To 60 Seconds
  • Repetition: Do it on the right side first after which on the left side
  • Stretches: Hips, Shoulders, Neck
  • Strengthens: Spine, Digestive System, Urinary System, Reproductive System

How To Do Ardha Matsyendrasana

Ardha Matsyendrasana steps
  1. Sit erect with your legs stretched out. Make sure that your toes are positioned together and your backbone is erect.
  2. Now, bend your left leg such that the heel of the left foot lies next to the best hip.
  3. Then, place the right leg next to the left knee by taking it over the knee.
  4. Twist your waist, neck, and shoulders in direction of the right, and set your gaze over your right shoulder. And your backbone must be erect.
  5. There are many ways you’ll be able to place your arms to increase and decrease the stretch. But to do it as per your body capability, you can place the right hand behind you, and the left hand on the right knee.
  6. Hold the pose for just a few seconds, about 30 to 60 as you breathe slowly, but deeply.
  7. Exhale and release the right hand, after which the waist, chest, and eventually the neck. Relax as you sit straight.
  8. Repeat the steps on the opposite side, after that exhale and then come again to the center.

Precautions And Contraindications for Ardha Matsyendrasana

Ardha Matsyendrasana

Now that you know the way to do Ardha Matsyendrasana, let’s take a look at few factors of caution you have to remember when you do that asana.

  1. Pregnant women and women on menstruation should refrain from this pose because it involves a strong twist on the stomach.
  2. People who’ve just lately undergone abdomen, heart, or brain surgical procedures, mustn’t follow this asana.
  3. Those with a hernia or peptic ulcers should do that asana carefully and that under the supervision of a yoga teacher.
  4. People who’ve got a minor slipped disc problem will benefit from this asana. But they have to do it under the supervision and with a physician’s approval. If you have an extreme spinal problem or an extreme slipped disc problem, it’s best to stay away from this asana.

Beginner’s Tips

Many hand variations on this pose could make it fairly hard for inexperienced persons to adapt.

First of all, ensure you sit on a blanket and follow this pose. Next, earlier than you attempt the hand and arm variations, simply wrap one arm across the raised leg, and hug your thigh to your torso.

With practice, you can begin attempting different variations.

Advanced Pose Variations

Ardha Matsyendrasana is an advanced pose that you can do to deepen the stretch.

  1. If your hips and backbone are flexible enough, you can carry the upper left arm to the outside of the upper right thigh.
  2. Keeping your legs positioned the best way they should be, exhale and switch your gaze to the right.
  3. Lean away from the upper thigh, and bend the left elbow such that it presses against the surface of the upper right thigh.
  4. Now, cuddle your torso against your thigh, and work the upper left arm on the outer leg till the back of the shoulder presses against the knee.
  5. Let your elbow keep bent, and hand raised in direction of the ceiling. Lean in to form a slight upper backbend. Your shoulder blades should be firm against the back. Keep in mind to lift the top of your torso through the top sternum.

Benefits Of The Ardha Matsyendrasana

Ardha Matsyendrasana Benefits

These are some superb advantages of the Half Spinal Twist.

  1. This asana makes the backbone extra flexible. It tones the spinal nerves and improves the best way the spinal cord functions.
  2. Ardha Matsyendrasana helps to stretch the muscular tissues on one side of the body whereas compressing the muscular tissues on the opposite facet.
  3. This asana helps relieve stiffness and backache from between the vertebrae.
  4. This asana helps to remedy a slipped disc.
  5. It provides massage to the abdomen organs, and due to this fact growing the digestive juices and ultimately improving the functioning of the digestive system.
  6. Ardha Matsyendrasana asana helps to massage and stimulate the pancreas, and thus, helps those affected by diabetes.
  7. This asana helps to manage the secretion of both adrenalin and bile.
  8. This asana helps to alleviate stress and pressure that’s trapped within the back.
  9. Ardha Matsyendrasana additionally helps to open up the chest and improve the supply of oxygen to the lungs.
  10. It helps to loosen the joints on the hip and releases stiffness.
  11. It increases the circulation of blood, purifies the blood, and detoxifies the inner organs.
  12. Ardha Matsyendrasana will increase the circulation of blood to the pelvic area, thus providing vitamins, blood, and oxygen, and enhancing the well-being of the reproductive system in addition to the urinary system.
  13. This asana also helps to remedy urinary tract infections.
  14. Ardha Matsyendrasana can be useful for the menstrual disorder [1]


Half Spinal Twist Pose

Ardha Matsyendrasana is a great asana if you are suffering from back pain, it will relieve stress from your back, message the body, and improves the digestive system too. 

Add this to your routine and feel the results.


This article provides general information only. It would be better if you consult an expert. It is not a substitute for an expert at all.



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