Sarvangasana Yoga Pose: The Shoulderstand Exercise

Sarvangasana Yoga Pose

Shoulderstand (sarvangasana) is often referred to as the queen of all yoga postures. You need to use blanket to perform this pose.

Fold two or more firm blankets into rectangles measuring about 1 foot by 2 feet, and stack them one on top of the other. You can place a sticky mat over the blankets to help the upper arms stay in place while in the pose. Then lie on the blankets with your shoulders supported (and parallel to one of the longer edges) and your head on the floor. Lay your arms on the floor alongside your torso, then bend your knees and set your feet against the floor with the heels close to the sitting bones. Exhale, press your arms against the floor, and push your feet away from the floor, drawing your thighs into the front torso. Stepwise process of Sarvangasana Yoga Pose is explained below:

Sarvangasana – The Shoulderstand Yoga Pose

Definition: An inverted pose, with your body resting on your shoulders.
Sarvangasana, the Sanskrit name for the Shoulderstand, comes from the word “sarva”, meaning whole. This Asana strengthens your entire body; it gives many of the benefits of the Headstand, but here the circulation is directed to your thyroid gland instead of the head.

Objective: To stretch your cervical and thoracic regions.

STEP 1 – LEGS IN THE AIR FOR SARVANGASANA YOGA POSE

Before beginning the Shoulderstand, make sure that there is enough room behind you. You must be able to stretch your arms out behind your head and have at least 30 cm (1 ft) between your fingertips and any obstructions. Lie flat on your back, with your feet together. Inhale while bringing your legs up to a right angle.

STEP 2 – MOVING UP FOR SARVANGASANA YOGA POSE

Tuck your hands under your buttocks, with your fingers pointing toward your spine. Then, as you exhale, gently raise your body by letting your hands walk down your back and push you into position.

Sarvangasana - The Shoulderstand yoga pose

STEP 3 – IN BALANCE FOR SARVANGASANA YOGA POSE

Continue to move your hands up your back until you rest on your shoulders. Breathe normally, and keep your legs straight. Hold for 30 seconds; as the pose becomes easier, increase the time to 3 minutes. To come down, drop your feet halfway to the floor behind your head. Put your hands on the floor. Unroll your body vertebra by vertebra to the floor. Hand position: Put your hands on the small of your back, with your fingers toward your spine.

VARIATION IN SARVANGASANA YOGA POSE

Inhale with your hands on your back. Exhale and bring one foot to the floor behind your head. Inhale. Raise your leg. Swap sides.

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