Janu Sirsasana – The Head to Knee Pose

Janu Sirsasana or the Head to Knee Pose is an excellent asana to increase flexibility of the hamstring muscles, back, thighs, hip joints, arms and the shoulders. Janu Sirsasana also soothes the mind and calms the heart.

Janu Sirsasana should ideally be performed when the stomach is empty. It is a great stretching exercise for the whole body.


How to do Janu Sirsasana (The Head to Knee Pose)?

  1. Sit on the floor with both the legs stretched out in front of you.
  2. Now bend the right leg and bring the feet close to the left thighs. Let the sole of the right foot touch the inner left thigh.
  3. Adjust the right foot so that it touches the right groin.
  4. Stretch the right bend leg as far back as possible without strain.
  5. The left leg should remain the straight position with toes pointing upwards.
  6. Take a deep breath and take your arms above the head in line with your ears.
  7. Now exhale slowly and bend the body forward.
  8. Let the hands go forward and grab the left foot either by the toes or the middle of the foot depending on which is more comfortable.
  9. Pull your trunk forward until your forehead touches the knees.
  10. Remain in this position for as long as you are comfortable. One can hold the breath if you remain in the position for few seconds. Else for longer durations, one can breathe normally in the final position.
  11. To release the Janu Sirsasana Pose, raise your trunk to upright sitting position. Inhale while coming back to the sitting pose. Release the right leg and stretch it in front of you to come back to the starting position where both legs are stretched out in front of you.
  12. Repeat this pose with the other leg, i.e. bending the left leg against the right thigh.


 Benefits of Janu Sirsasana (The Head to Knee Pose)

  1. Janu Sirsasana is an excellent asana for gaining flexibility of the legs, hamstrings, shoulders, arms and the thighs.
  2. Janu Sirsasana calms the mind and has a soothing effect on the heart.
  3. To get further stretching benefits, one can practice Paschimottasana where the bending is done with both legs stretched out in front of the body.