Very similar to the forward bend, the hands to feet pose, or Pada Hastasana, gives you some of the same excellent benefits.
In this standing yoga pose, the hamstrings of the legs are fully extended and stretched, and back and spinal flexibility is also increased. Another positive aspect is an increase of blood circulation, especially to the upper body and head. Bending down as far as possible is desired only if the legs are kept straight. The spine also needs to remain straight throughout the exercise.
Start the pose with your hands up in the air, palms facing each other. The arms should be close to your ears and will give you a vertical stretch. Also keep the feet next to one another. Erect your spine by pushing your head upwards and stretch your whole body on a vertical scale in the process.
Exhale and bend forward from the middle towards your feet. It is essential not to bend the knees too much as you are doing this. Go as low as you can - but remember to keep the spine straight as well. Grab hold of your toes (or ankles, if you are not flexible enough yet) and then pull your head towards your legs. Advanced yogis manage to touch their shins with their head in this pose. Each exhalation should be the signal for you to go an inch lower or closer to the shins.
When exiting the hands-to-feet pose, remember to inhale gently.
Exit by slowly reversing the movements you used to enter the pose. After a good stretch with your hands above your head you can lower them by your side and relax.