Tree Pose

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Vrksasana

In Sanskrit, “vrksa” means tree and “asana” means "yoga pose."

 

How to: Tree Pose

Begin with the standing position, the Mountain Pose or Tadasana. Transfer your weight gradually on your left foot and raise your right foot so that it’s bent inwards to your left thigh. Hold your right ankle with your right hand.

Place your right foot in such a way that your sole is rested against the inner left thigh. When done correctly, your heel will be firmly pressed into into the left groins, with toes pointing downwards to the ground.  Your left foot will be directly below the midline of the body, and your knees parallel once you deepen fully into Vrksasana.

You may relax your hands on the pelvis’s top rim. The pelvis should be in a natural and central position, with its top rim aligned to the ground.

Increase the length of your tailbone downwards. Pressurize the floor with your right foot as you resist the motion with your left leg. You can now form the Anjali Mudra, or "Namaste Position" with your hands folded in prayer, raised upwards.  You may also keep them at the level of your chest in case you are finding in challenging to balance.  For a yoga flow, use both positions, and then you may use the hand positions to guide you naturally into other poses such as the Dancer Pose, or Natarajasana, or Warriar III, Virabhadrasana.

Remain like this for 30 to 60 seconds. Exit with an exhalation, returning back to Mountain Pose or Tadasana. Switch your legs and repeat.

 

Benefits of Tree Pose

Following are the major benefits of the Vrksasana when practiced regularly:

 

  • Provides strength to calves, thighs, spine and ankles.
  • Stretches the inner thighs, groins, shoulders and chest.
  • Enhances overall body balance, and benefits seniors.
  • Removes sciatica and cures flat feet.
  • Enhances bone density.

 

For beginners in yoga, the Tree Pose is helpful in providing them the adequate sense of balance that is mandatory in many such similar poses. If in case your raised foot is sliding against the inner thigh, you can add a folded blanket between them to increase friction. Wearing natural cotton/lycra yoga pants will also help with this.  This will result in good hold and position of your lifted foot.

The advanced yoga students or the athletes will find the Vrksasana Pose particularly helpful in improving the strength of their thighs and legs. You may increase the challenge significantly by closing your eyes while performing this pose. This will check your ability to maintain balance without any external aid. If you surf, this variation is a must to improve your ride and balance on the board.

Avoid this yoga pose if you suffer from the following problems or conditions:

  • Insomnia
  • Headache
  • High or low blood pressure

 

Be fearless and confident as you stand still like a tree in the Tree Pose.