Pada is a Sanskrit word which means “foot.” The term is used in the names of certain poses in which stretching or holding the foot is involved. An example of such a posture is padangusthasana, a standing asana, also called big toe pose in English. Almost all poses with the word, pada, stretch the spine and promote spinal flexibility and health.

Padangusthasana is a beginner’s pose. It stretches the spine, tones the back, improves digestion and relieves stress. Variations of padangusthasana are supta padangusthasana, utthita hasta padangusthasana and eka pada padangusthasana.

Padahastasana is one of the poses included in the Sun Salutation sequence. The posture stretches the spine, tones the waist and relieves stress.

Eka pada adho mukha svanasana is a variation of adho mukha svanasana. The pose stretches the spine and energizes the whole body.

Other yoga poses with “pada” in their names include: eka pada kapotasana, eka pada sirsasana, eka pada Koundinyasana, eka pada dhanurasana and eka pada bakasana.