How to do Supta Matsyendrasana (Supine Spinal Twist)

A powerful reclining twist Pose which provides various benefits for the entire body. When we twist our body in this pose, it increases the flexibility of our spine, tones the abdominal organs and improves the digestion. The Supine Spinal Twist Pose is a restorative beginner pose which helps to relax your mind and body.

Supta-Reclining | Matsyendra-King of the fish | Asana-Pose

This asana is pronounced as SOOP-tah MAT-see-en-DRAHS-anna, Sanskrit- सुप्तर्मत्स्येन्द्रासन. The Supta Matsyendrasana is also known as the Supine Twist Pose, the Reclining Twist Pose, the Reclining Lord of the Fish Pose, and the Jathara Parivartanasana.

Benefits of Supine Spinal Twist Pose

  • This pose stretches your shoulders, chest, hips, spine, lower back, and upper back.
  • Stretches spine, vertebrae and makes them flexible.
  • Relieves stiffness in your spine, hips and lower back.
  • Releases stress, anxiety, depression and calm your mind.
  • Massages the back, hips and stretches the back muscles and glutes.
  • Massages and strengthens the abdominal organs.
  • The twist increases the blood flow to your digestive organs and improves the digestion.


If you have any recent medical concerns, discuss with your doctor before practising this yoga pose. Practitioners who have recent or current knee or hip injury, lower back problem, internal organ surgery should not practice this pose. It’s advisable to practice this pose under the guidance of an experienced yoga teacher if you are suffering from back pain, back injury or degenerative disk disease. Women should practise this pose under the guidance of an expert during pregnancy.

Steps to do a perfect Supine Spinal Twist Pose

  • Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the yoga mat. Rest your arms at your sides.
  • While you exhale, gently press your lower back on the floor.
  • If you need extra neck support, use pillows or rolled blanket to rest your head.
  • Contract your abdominal muscles, bend your knees while you inhale and lift your feet off the floor.

Supine Spinal Twist Pose

  • Now, exhale and stretch out your arms to the side so that they can create a straight line with your shoulders. Place your palms facing downward, so that they can provide you with the extra support.
  • Continue to support your spine with your core muscles. Now, bring your feet and knees together.
  • Inhale and lift your heels slightly higher than your knees.
  • Exhale and lower both your legs to the left of the floor. Ensure that your knees and feet are stacked. Make sure that your knees should be at the level of your hips and heels resting about a foot away from buttocks.
  • Breathe slowly and turn your head to the right. Maintain a twist in your upper spine while rooting down your right shoulder. Hold this pose for few breaths.
  • Now, to release this posture, press both your hands to the floor and contract your abdominal muscles.
  • As you inhale lift your knees and feet over your chest. Hold your knees with both hands.
  • Exhale, pull your thighs to your chest, and lift your head and chest to your thighs. Ensure not to lift your shoulders as you raise your head.
  • Now, lower your shoulders and head to the floor. Contract your abdominal muscles. Stretch out your arms and repeat the same procedure on the other side.


Beginners might find it difficult stack their legs in this pose. Ensure to stretch your top knee only as much as you can. Don’t force your body at any moment to perfect this pose.  You could use a pillow or bolster to support your knee.

Variation_Supine Spinal Twist Pose

After you mastered the basic pose, then increase the stretch in your hips with some variation. Cross your right knee over your left knee and wrap your right foot around the left calf muscles. This will reflect the pose of Garudasana. Now, shift your hips slightly to the right and drop your knees to the left. Bring your legs back to the center and repeat the same procedure on the other side.


You must make sure to keep your stomach and bowels empty before you practice this pose. Ensure to have your meals at least four to five hours before you do the asana so that your food gets properly digested, and you can expand your body fully during the practice.

Women should use pillows between their knees to be more comfortable during the pregnancy. To make this pose more relaxing you can use Yoga blocks to rest your top knee and top foot. In addition, place a folded blanket between your legs or rest your top knee or leg on a bolster or pillow. Relax your shoulders away from your ears and try to keep both shoulder blades on the floor. Rest the opposite hand on your top knee to gently add more weight. During the posture, take deep breaths and ensure not to hold your breath.

Twists are a great way to stimulate your abdominal muscles and reduce the stress, anxiety and improve your mood. Moreover, it is also a great pose to restore your balance. Now, since you know the steps and benefits of this pose, don’t wait. Enjoy your yoga practice and have an awesome day! If you feel this article is helpful to you then share your experience with us by commenting below. We would be happy to hear from you!

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