Poses by Type

Revolved Head-to-Knee Pose

Revolved Head-to-Knee Pose, or Parivrtta Janu Sirsasana in Sanskrit, is a twisting variation of Janu Sirsasana that takes the classic forward bend to the next level of release. This pose gifts a deep, vivid stretch to the side body paired with loving and heart-opening movement.

parivrtta = revolved
janu = knee
sirsa = head

Revolved Side Angle Pose: Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1

Sit on the floor with your torso upright and your legs wide. Bend your left knee and snug the heel into your left groin. Then slightly bend your right knee and slide the heel a few inches toward the right buttock.

See also More Twists

Step 2

Exhale, lean to the right, and press the back of your right shoulder against the inside of your right knee. Lay your right forearm on the floor inside your right leg, palm facing up. Lengthen the right side of your torso along the inside of the right thigh. Turn your right palm toward the inside edge of the foot and take hold of it, thumb on the top of the foot, fingers on the sole.

See also More Seated Poses

Step 3

Remember, the pose is anchored by the femur bone of the left leg. Press the left femur firmly to the floor, as you inhale and slowly extend your right knee. Keep the back of your shoulder connected to the inner knee as you extend it; you’ll find that your torso is drawn out by the straightening knee. When your knee is straight, twist your torso toward the ceiling.

Step 4

Inhale your left arm straight up toward the ceiling, lean it back slightly, and then, with another inhale, sweep it behind your left ear and take hold of the outside edge of the right foot. Press the elbows away from each other, using them like a crank to help twist the upper torso further. Turn your head to look at the ceiling.

Step 5

Hold for a minute. To come out, first untwist your torso, and without coming to upright, sweep it to the left midway between the legs. Then inhale and lift to an upright position. Remember not to come up directly from the twisted position.. Repeat these steps to the other side for the same length of time.


Pose Information

Sanskrit Name

Parivrtta Janu Sirsasana

Pose Level


Contraindications and Cautions


Theraputic Applications

Mild backache

Preparatory Poses

Upavistha Konasana (Wide-Angle Seated Forward Bend)
Utthita Parsvakonasana (Side Angle Pose), with the bottom arm on the inside of the forward leg
Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward-Facing Dog)
Baddha Konasana (Bound Angle Pose)
Supta Padangusthasana (Reclining Big Toe Pose)
Uttanasana (Standing Forward Bend)
Vrksasana (Tree Pose)
Janu Sirsasana (Head-of-the-Knee Pose)

Follow-up Poses

Parivrtta Janu Sirsasana (Revolved Head-to-Knee Pose) is typically practiced as part of a sitting forward bend sequence.

Beginner’s Tip

It’s better to keep the bottom shoulder in contact with the inner knee than to lose the contact in order to straighten the knee completely.


Stretches the spine, shoulders, and hamstrings
Stimulates abdominal organs such as the liver and kidneys
Improves digestion