This info-graphic nicely illustrates the reason why we always instruct you to 'bend your legs' during most forward bends in yoga. Bending your legs reduces the risk of lower back strain, hamstring pull and shear stress on the sacrum:
This image reminds me that there is both stillness and movement in yoga asana practise. In movement we seek stillness and calm. In rest we stay mindful and attentive.
Here's a little info-graphic if you are interested in learning about some of the philosophy behind yoga. In this case Patanjali's 8 Limbs of Yoga.
There is so much wisdom wrapped up in this two minutes. The speaker neatly merges the concepts of ahimsa (non-violence) and tapas (determination) as practiced on the yoga mat and in daily life. The aim is to seek the middle path that neither calls us to withdraw into ourselves nor fight with ourselves or the world around us.
“I offer you peace. I offer you love. I offer you friendship. I see your beauty. I hear your need.
I feel your feelings. My wisdom flows from the Highest Source. I salute that Source in you.
Let us work together for unity and love.” - Mahatma Gandhi