How To Do Marichi Pose III (Marichyasana ‘C’)

A seated-twist asana, Marichi Pose III can be considered as a stepping stone for many advanced poses. The simple-yet-effective spinal twist requires both patience and perseverance. The pose might look easy on the surface but engages many different muscles and muscle groups which makes it perfect for beginners as well as advanced level yogis. Dedicated to sage Marichi, Marichi here means a ray of light or he is also considered as the son of Brahma who was born to rule over the war-like storm gods, Maruts.

He was one of the 12 seers of Dharma who had the right to declare the righteousness of the laws of the Universe. In Indian Mythology, Marichi was referred to as the Vedic Adam or the father of the humankind. Here, we will describe Marichyasana ‘C’ or III, at length, with a step-by-step guide and be speaking about Marichyasana benefits, modifications, and contraindications.

Step-By-Step Instructions on How to Perform Marichyasana C

Step 1:  Be seated in Dandasana or the Staff Pose by extending the legs in front of you. Practitioners with tight hamstrings can roll a blanket and sit on it to get an extra leverage and space in the back.

Step 2: Starting with the right side, bend the right knee and place the right foot close to the sit bones and in line with the right hip. The left leg will be straight and strong and the left thigh will be heavily pressed on the floor, the knee will be pulled back, while the toes of the left foot will be pointing towards the ceiling and the left heel will firmly stick to the floor to create an active outlook.

Step 3: To perform the twist, rotate the torso towards the right side (with exhalation) to wrap the left arm around the right thigh. The left arm will gently push the right thigh inward to create a long line from the outer edge of the right thigh to the right hip, which is also pressed on the floor. The right hand fingertips are pressed on the floor behind the practitioner to gain extra length in the torso.

Step 4: The left hand is stretched with fingers spread, while the elbow is in line with the right calf. The spine will be long and straight and the practitioner must try to go further and deeper into the twist with every breath.

Step 5: The head will be turned towards the right side in line with the right shoulder, in order to finally engage the cervical spine and complete the pose. Stay in this position for 3 to 5 breaths and perform the Marichyasana Yoga on the opposite side.

Modifications & Variations 

Beginners might want to add a little modification to Marichyasana C as they might find it difficult to twist the torso completely with an erect spine. For this, they can sit about a foot away from the wall and as they finish the twisting of the torso (in step 3), they can place the right hand up and against by the wall to gain extra support and length to lift and keep the spine erect.

Yet another way to secure the best interest of practitioners, it is suggested that the practitioners sit on the bolster or a folded blanket. It is often times difficult to keep the torso upright in this pose and the shoulders also tend to sink or get rounded. When the practitioner will sit on a folded blanket, he or she will be able to hold the pose for a longer duration, keep the back straight and the pelvis in a neutral position. They will also be able to reap the benefits of Marichyasana in a profound manner.

Marichyasana C Benefits & Advantages

  • The seated twist, Marichyasana III is a simple pose, which paves way for advanced poses and also, it helps the practitioners in overcoming the hurdles posed by Marichyasana I, II, and IV
  • Gently press and massage the organs of the belly. It is great for the stomach, kidneys, liver, and spleen.
  • It works to remove extra belly fat and gives a sculpted figure as it not only works on the abdomen, but the entire core, which includes obliques, and back as well.
  • People with heavily sedentary jobs or traveling for longer duration can feel stiffness in the back and the spinal column. This pose takes care of the stiffness and helps create enhanced suppleness in the spine
  • Also, those of us who suffer from lower back ache or inflexibility of the lower back can try this pose to help the practitioner in reaching a stress-free and pain-free state
  • Women can practice this pose during, before and, after menstruation as it helps ease cramps and gives a soothing effect to the mind


  • The massaging motion of the stomach can prove negative for the practitioners with High or Low BP
  • Women during their pregnancy should not perform Marichyasana C at all
  • Also, men and women with spinal injuries should avoid this pose until full recovery
  • During diarrhea or loss stomach one must not perform this pose at all

Lastly, practitioners with a headache, migraine, and insomnia should practice Yoga Marichyasana for a limited time only

To know more about Marichi Pose III in further details, explore our Yoga Teacher Training In India.

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