Matsya means a fish. Matsyasana is dedicated to Matsya the Fish Incarnation of Vishnu, the source and maintainer of the universe and of all things.


  1. Sit in Padmasana.
  2. Lie flat on the back with the legs on the floor.
  3. Exhale, arch the back by lifting the neck and the chest, take the head back and rest the crown on the floor. Drag the head further back by holding the crossed legs with the hands and increase the back arch.
  4. Now take the hands from the legs, bend the arms, hold the elbows with the hands and rest the forearms on the floor behind the head.
  5. Stay in this position from 30 to 60 seconds while breathing deeply.
  6. Rest the back of the head on the floor, lay fiat on the back, inhale and then come up to Padmasana, release the legs and relax.
  7. Recros s the legs the other way and repeat the pose for the same length of time.
  8. If positions 3 and 4 are difficult to achieve, lie fiat on the back with the arms stretched straight over the head.

Effects of Matsyasana

The dorsal region is fully extended in this posture and the chest is well expanded. Breathing becomes fuller. The thyroids benefit from the exercise due to the stretching of the neck. The pelvic joints become elastic. Matsyasana relieves inflamed and bleeding piles.