The Shoulder Stand
Next to the headstand, this posture is considered one of the best asanas. It is often
seen being practiced in many gymnasiums, beauty salons, and health clubs. But without the
deep breathing with this exercise, it does not have much therapeutic value and will not be
considered a yoga posture.
This asana is sometimes called a "candle" because the body is kept straight
as a candle in this posture.
This asana is equally important for both men and women. It can be tried by
persons of all age levels.
- Lie flat on your back. Inhale deeply while raising your legs and spine until the toes
point to the ceiling.
- The body rests on the shoulders and the back of the neck. The body is supported by the
hands, which are placed on the center of the spine between the waist and the shoulder
blades. Keep your spine and legs straight.
- Breathe slowly and deeply with the abdomen and concentrate on the thyroid
gland. On a male, the thyroid gland is located behind the adams apple. For women,
it is located in the same area which is a few inches above the sternal notch (hollow of the
neck where the neck joins the rest of the body.) or approximately half way up the neck from the sternal notch.
in this position for about two minutes.
- To come out of this posture, just bend your knees, curve your back and slowly return to
lying on the floor while exhaling. First bend your knees, put the palms on the floor, then
curving the spine, gradually unfold it the way one unrolls a carpet. When your entire back
touches the floor, straighten the knees, take a deep breath and slowly lower your legs to
the ground while breathing out.
- If you wish, you may go straight into the next posture (the 'reverse posture') instead
of lying down.
- The main benefit of the shoulder stand is to get the thyroid gland working at peak
efficiency. It's the thyroid gland which is mainly responsible for your correct weight and
- The shoulder stand also regulates the sex glands.
- It vitalizes the nerves, purifies the blood and promote good circulation, strengthens
the lower organs and helps them to stay in place.
- It gives a healthy stretch to the neck muscles.
- It is beneficial for people suffering from poor circulation, constipation, indigestion,
asthma and reduced virility.
- This pose is especially recommended for women after childbirth and for those suffering
from painful menstruation, other female disorders, and seminal weakness.
The Sanskrit name for this posture sarvangasana means 'all the body'.
Retain this position for fifteen seconds to six minutes, adding fifteen seconds per
Do not try this exercise if you are suffering from organic disorders of the thyroid
gland. Be very cautious if you are suffering from chronic nasal catarrh.
[Go To:The Reverse
Posture (Viparitakarani Mudra)]
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