Take special precautions while doing any asana. If you are learning yoga, then take the advice of a knowledgeable person. Do not put any kind of force in the event of pain or unable to do so. Keep in mind that you will be able to succeed only with constant practice.
Brief Introduction Of The Sarvangasana
- The Sarvangasana has been practiced in different forms in hatha yoga and in modern yoga exercises. It is also otherwise known to people as the Salamba Sarvangasana or the shoulder stand. Sometimes, it is also referred to as the supported shoulder stand.
- Sarvangasana is an inverted asana and may require preparatory poses such as Setu Bandha Sarvangasana, Halasana, and Virasana. This is an asana that requires balance, concentration, and good flexibility. You may want to try the simpler version with the steps below.
- One has to understand that doing this asana with the support of a wall is ideal and would still have the benefits of doing it without the support. So, rather than risking injury, you might want to use a wall support to ensure that you are safe at all times practicing this pose.
How To Do The Sarvangasana?
- Since the Sarvangasana involves putting your body on the floor you might choose to use a yoga mat or a folded blanket or fabric for support. This would ensure that you are completely in a position that is comfortable to you throughout the process of this asana.
- It is also important that you choose a flat surface to practice this asana. The wall that you use for support should be a one that is sturdy enough to support the entire weight of your body if necessary. It is a good idea to practice flexibility before getting into this asana.
- For added comfort you might want to use something that is more than the yoga mat if you are a beginner. Folding two or more blankets to provide cushion or support might be a good idea for most people beginning with Sarvangasana.
- Lie down on your back in a comfortable position with your head seated on the folded fabric that resembles a pillow but is flat in nature. You can choose to take a full breath while your body is calm and composed. Your hands should be parallel to your body while your feet are kept close with each other.
- From this position you can begin exhaling while both of your legs are raised. You can bring them to a position where they are in a right angle to your thighs. It is imperative that your body remains straight while your hips are left undisturbed on the ground that you are at.
- Your exhaling should be continuous while in this pose and when you begin to bring your hands to your waist. Slowly but steadily, you should now use the support of your hands to move the waist upward pushing your legs upward at the same time.
- At this juncture your body weight should be on your arms and not elsewhere. However, the elbows would do the supporting job where your body can be rested and provide that extra support.
- Now, you should shift your focus to moving your fingers to support the hip-bones. While you are at this position you can try to bring your thumb towards the naval area and pointing towards it.
- From here on your back should move up and your body should look as if it is supported by the neck. Remember, do not rush into this position as it might lead to an injury. Focus and ensure that the above steps are done in one motion with you exhaling and attaining the final pose possible within a few seconds.
- Your breathing should be normal once you have reached the final position. Remember that you should not try to maintain this pose for more than 2 minutes.
- To return to the normal position you can do so by retracting the steps and while inhaling all the time. Remember to complete the retraction process within a few seconds.
- You can now relax and breathe easy and rest in the lying down position.
Following each of the step to its word is important for people choosing to practice the Sarvangasana. This is the only way you would be able to master this asana in the right way. The wall being used as a supporting structure ensures that you do not lose balance.
Benefits Of The Sarvangasana
There is no questioning the benefits of Sarvangasana especially for the body and mind. This is one of the reasons why this asana is so popular in most parts of the world. Almost all yoga instructors or teachers would suggest this asana for most people. The best benefits are:
- Increased flow of blood to the brain leading to better functioning of the brain. It also relieves stress and other related problems helping you to be active at all times of the day. Practicing this asana would also help you relax better and control stress.
- People with varicose veins, constipation, and indigestion would see significant progress in recovery when they practice the Sarvangasana.
- Your spine becomes flexible than it used to be and your shoulders and arms are strengthened.
- Parathyroid and thyroid glands are simulated while practicing the Sarvangasana leading to normalizing their overall functioning.
- It helps return more venous blood leading to the heart by stretching the heart muscles.
Precautions To Be Taken While Doing The Sarvangasana
Since the Sarvangasana requires balance and flexibility it is imperative that you practice it with care and control. This can ensure that any unforeseen injuries are avoided and you attain the full benefits of practicing this asana.
- Never be in a rush to move away from the wall and practice this asana without support. The practicing of this asana without support can be attained after regular practice for a few days.
- Women should never practice this asana during pregnancy and while menstruating.
- People with problems in the spine, back, neck, and shoulders are suggested to avoid this asana.
- It also applies for people with heart problems and high blood pressure.
- Always be aware of your body condition before you choose to practice this asana.
- This can be done with the advice of your general physician or an experienced yoga instructor.
- Practicing the Sarvangasana regularly would ensure that you enjoy good health.
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