image credit to Shirin Mehdi
In Sanskrit janu means knee and sirsa means head. Janu Sirsasana is Head-to-Knee Forward Bend.
Position of Readiness
Sit on the floor. Stretch out both the legs in front., Keep your spine straight up and firm. Look in front. Keep the hands down on the floor. Breathe normally.
From a sitting position with your legs extended, now inhaling fold your right leg at the knee and cross it over the knee of the extended leg (left leg), placing your foot near the outside of your hip. If it is difficult you may, bend your right knee, and draw the heel back toward your perineum. Rest your right foot sole lightly against your inner left thigh, and lay the outer right leg on the floor, with the shin at a right angle to the left leg.
If your right knee not rests comfortably on the floor, you may support it with a cushion.
Press your sits bones downward. Push the crown of your head away from your shoulders.
Allow your fingertips to float up overhead and press them away from your shoulders.
Expand your chest by pressing out through your chest points.
Press the heel of your extended leg away from your hip. Exhale and extend forward from the groins, not the hips. Be sure not to pull yourself forcefully into the forward bend, hunching the back and shortening the front torso. As you descend, bend your elbows out to the sides and lift them away from the floor. Lengthen forward into a comfortable stretch. The lower belly should touch the thighs first, the head last.
Stay in the pose anywhere from 30 sec. to 3 minutes. Release, allowing your torso to return to an upright position, and repeat on the opposite side.
Benefits of Janu Sirsasana (Head-to-Knee Forward Bend)
Janu Sirsasana Stretches the spine, shoulders, hamstrings, and groins it stimulates the liver and kidneys, improves digestion, calms the brain and helps relieve mild depression, anxiety, fatigue, headache. It is very good for high blood pressure, insomnia, and sinusitis.
Janu Sirsasana relieve the symptoms of menopause, menstrual discomfort.
It is recommended to perform the asana without coming forward, keeping your back spine concave and front torso long during pregnancy(up to second trimester). Consult yoga expert.