Sarvangasana - Shoulder-stand

This posture is very healing and helps you to let go of pressure from the environment – gravity. Gravity influences you and pushes you down, causing your inner organs to stick together more. Staying in this pose a few minutes every day, helps your body bounce back into its natural state. Let me add that this is a very advanced posture and for most of you in order to be able to stand on your shoulders rather than on shoulder-blades, an adjustment with props is needed. If you do not feel ready to try it out on your own, please lay down on your back with your legs stretched out against the wall. Also please do not move your neck at any time during the practice.

Let’s start:

  • Prepare props (either blocks or blankets) to put under your shoulders. The height will differ for each person, generally, 10–15 cm of height is enough. See picture for details.
  • Lay down on your back. The edge of your shoulders should be around 3 fingers away from the top edge of your block/blanket.
  • Make sure your neck is in line with your spine.
  • Bring your knees towards your chest, while at the same time push with your palms into the floor.
  • Lift your hips up and swing your legs up and back so your feet move behind your head, your body weight resting on your neck and shoulders.
  • Realign and make sure you are on your shoulders without feeling any pressure on your neck. Your shoulders are very close to the edge of your blanket. Straighten your neck and realign your head to lie comfortably on the ground.
  • Take your hands and bring them on to your lower back. Support your lower back.
  • Then slowly lift up one leg and then the other.
  • Balance on your shoulder stand, looking towards your navel.
  • Stay here for at least ten breaths.
  • Then slowly release your feet over your head, releasing one vertebra at a time from your neck downwards until your tailbone touches the floor.
  • Lay flat on your back and relax.
  • For details of the adjusted version against the wall for which you can stay in the position for up to 15 minutes, please do contact me.

Practising this posture stimulates the thyroid and parathyroid glands, strengthens the arms and shoulders and keeps your spine flexible, improves circulation and nourishes your brain with more blood, so your mind calms down and improves your digestion.

Do not practice this posture if you suffer from high blood pressure, heart conditions or brain diseases as well as not during pregnancy or menstruation.

It is important to feel right when you do the posture. Remember to keep your focus on conscious movement, listening to, connecting to and feeling your body. Stop doing the posture if you feel uncomfortable at any time.

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