Yoga Pose of the Week: Marichyasana A / Seated Twist

Yoga Pose of the Week: Marichyasana A / Seated Twist


23 January 2016


The Marichyasana A is also known as the ray of light pose, and the name is derived from Sage Marichi. There are four variations of this pose, and this is the first. It becomes slightly harder as the changes go on, so it’s easier to break them up into separate stages.

Sanskrit Name: Marichyasana

  • Marichi: A ray of light (from either the sun or the moon)
  • Asana: Pose

How to do:

The marichyasana A is a pose dedicated to Marichi, the great grandfather of Manu, who is the ‘father of humanity’. It’s quite an ambitious pose for beginners and can be modified or include props as a helping hand. As with all yoga, the move can be broken up into stages and when practiced in isolation can help you gain a better

Start Slow

Marichyasana A in basic terms is a seated twist. During a session, you’ll usually find it sequenced within many other seated poses, including forward bends. On the first attempt, you may find you have some tightness in your groin, hips and might find it hard to twist and clasp your arms behind your back. In its full manifestation, this pose is quite a deep stretch. I would caution you to go slowly and let your body open itself out to you on its own and not force it.

Use a bolster to sit on which will help keep your shape or use a strap on your hands to enable them to clasp together. Suck your stomach in and keep your core tight - this will help stimulate abdominal organs like the liver and kidneys as well as improve digestion.

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This is a brilliant pose for people who are suffering from flatulence, constipation or obesity. The pose helps to stimulate the organs in the abdomen, which can also improve digestion.


Although Marichyasana A can be helpful for constipation, it can be harmful to those who are suffering from diarrhoea. The pose can help push out stools due to its deep stretch and stimulation of the area. In turn, this type of strain can bring on diarrhoea.