11. Full Slow Forward and Backward Bending (with Rubbing)
a. A. Trunk Bending: While standing, legs apart and straight, bend from the waist, backward (INHALE), then forward to the knees (EXHALE). No pause, smooth movements; relax the neck and back on the way down. Perform 20 of each set.
b. B. Abdominal Movements: Lay hands flat on stomach. INHALE just until you have distended the abdominal wall. As you EXHALE, pull in with the hands up and under the ribcage. Do 20 of these. When the abdominals are stronger and you have more control, you can stop using the hands.
c. (the rubbing) The bending of the trunk proceeds as with A., and breathing should likewise occur as with B. Moving backwards, the hands start rubbing downward from the chest to abdomen, and as you move forward, the abdomen draws in, and the hands move around to the small of the back (w/ thumbs down). Continuing downward, the hands pass over the buttocks, back of legs to ankles at the lowest point.. As you rise, the hands move up the front of the legs and are removed at the thighs. Perform 20 of each set.
N.B. For half of the upward motions, stroke the inside of the legs. The knees may bend a little on the forward motion at first, but work to keeping them straight. When drawing in the abdomen (as in B., but without assistance), hold it completely only a few moments, and quickly “blow out” again.