With a name like the Half Lord of the Fishes Pose, you’d think that this would look a little more fish-like, but it’s not, and it’s a relatively simple position to get yourself into, after you do it a couple of times!
Ardha Matsyendrasana, also known as the Half Lord of the Fishes Pose
ardha = half
Matsyendra = king of the fish (matsya = fish
indra = ruler), a legendary teacher of yoga
To do the Half Lord of the Fishes Pose: Begin in the the Staff Pose (Dandasana),
From Staff Pose – Dandasana, bring sole of right foot to floor on the outside of left thigh. Bend left knee, and tuck left foot in near right buttock. Inhale and bring left arm up near left ear.
Exhale and twist right arm, bringing left elbow to outside of right knee and right palm to the floor, just behind sit bones. Look out over right shoulder, but don’t overturn neck – twist originates in belly, not neck. On each inhale, draw spine long, and on each exhale, twist a little deeper.
Be sure to keep sole of right foot flat on floor. When you release pose, take a slight counter twist to opposite direction. Release legs and switch position as you prepare to twist to other side.
Beginners: may want to sit on some padding if uncomfortable. If you cannot bend the left leg into the ideal position, keep it extended.
Advanced: Come into a bind with arms. Thread left arm back underneath right knee. Reach right arm behind back, and clasp right wrist with left hand.