Home Wisdom Articles Yoga Sirsasana (Head Stand)

Sirsasana (Head Stand)

Sirsasana, or the Head Stand is the king posture in Yogasana. Many practitioners at first resist trying this asana, but after mastering the asana, it becomes an all time favourite! Although this pose looks nearly impossible to do, it can undoubtedly be learned with a little determination, patience and practice. Let us all cultivate the inner conviction to come out of our comfort zone, overcome fear and take a leap of faith.


There’s a three step process which we can follow in order for us to work towards practicing this beautiful asana.

STEP 1. The Dolphin Stretch

  • · Come onto the floor on your hands and knees. Set your knees directly below your hips and your forearms on the floor with your shoulders directly above your wrists. Interlock your fingers.
  • · Inhale and lift your knees away from the floor, with the buttocks lifted upward.
  • · Exhale and push the torso forward bringing your face towards the hands, making sure that the knees are still straight.
  • · Repeat this movement 20 times.

STEP 2. With Wall Support

  • · Kneel on the floor. Lace your fingers together and set the forearms on the floor, elbows at shoulder width. Roll the upper arms slightly outward, but press the inner wrists firmly into the floor. Set the crown of your head on the floor.
  • · Inhale and lift your knees off the floor. Carefully walk your feet closer to your elbows, heels elevated. Form an inverted ‘V’.
  • · Exhale and gently lift your feet off the floor or kick them up and place them against the wall.
  • · Keep breathing. As you get more comfortable in the posture, you can try to release one leg at a time off the wall. Hold the position for 6 to 8 breaths.
  • · To release, slowly come back down and rest in Balasana, or the Child’s pose for half the time you spent being in Sirsasana. Example: if you were in head stand for 8 breaths, rest in child’s pose for 4 breaths.

STEP 3. Without Wall Support

Follow the same instructions as step number 2. Engage your core & lift up gently. Hold the position for 6 to 8 breaths after which, rest in Balasana for 3 to 4 breaths. Initially, you can try it using a mattress or having someone support you to help you out! Always remember to be careful so as to not injure yourself, while still challenging yourself towards perfecting the asana in each attempt.

Benefits:

  • · Improves blood circulation, especially towards the head and brain.
  • · Increases focus.
  • · Relieves stress.
  • · Improves digestion.
  • · Strengthens shoulders and arms.
  • · Stimulates Lymphatic System.
  • · Develops strength in the core muscles.

Contraindications:

People with glaucoma, severe or acute migraine, shoulder and neck injuries, hypertension, severe heart problems, those suffering osteoporosis, and pregnant woman should avoid doing this asana.

Being one of the most important asanas in Hatha Yoga, let us not miss out on learning and practicing the King of asana’s. This posture is also a great way to get to know our selves better. Ask yourself: How much do I resist? What are my hidden fears? Am I willing to accept the challenge? How quickly can I take the jump towards my goal? Let us bring a deeper meaning to learning and mastering Sirsasana, by practicing the art of self-contemplation along with it!

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