Tree Pose Near a Wall - Vrksasana

Benefits: This movement tones and strengthens the intrinsic muscles of the foot, ankle, and lower leg, which can help to correct flat feet. It also strengthens the abductors, or outer thigh and the buttocks of the standing leg. On the lifted leg the outer thigh receives a stretch, as well as the adductors or the muscles of the inner thigh. It develops stability and concentration of the mind, and gives one a sense of balance and poise, mentally and emotionally.

Step by Step Instructions:

For this pose you will need a wall close by. You may want to practise this variation of the pose if you have an ankle, knee, hip injury, inner ear imbalance, if you are beginner or simply if you are feeling unsteady in the pose.

Begin by standing on your mat in tadasana near a wall.

Like a tree, the deeper your roots go, the higher you can grow, and the steadier you will be. To find this grounding you need to have clarity in your feet. Firstly, notice if you are standing on both your feet evenly, or are you carrying more weight on one foot than the other? Descend all four corners of both your feet evenly. That is your big toe mound, your little toe mound, and your inner and outer heels.

Notice that the more you allow your feet to descend, the more the crown of your head will naturally grow upwards. Now without moving your left foot, lift your right foot off the floor and place it on your left inner calf with your toes pointing downward. If you feel unstable, bring your left fingertips on to the wall. Keep the crown of your head in line with your pelvic floor as you do this. The wall is there for support, not to lean on. If you feel steady, bring your hands to your heart centre in prayer position.

Keep allowing your left foot to descend, particularly your big toe mound and your inner heel, as this will help you balance. Ensure that both your hip bones are parallel to one another and parallel to your front. It is also helpful for your balance, to fix your gaze on a spot in front of you on the floor, and to connect to your breath. These tools help to focus the mind, which can be a key factor to good balance.

Exhale, release your right leg down and come to standing in tadasana, with your arms by your sides.

Breathe here, washing your mind clean of its past actions.

Turn to face the other way now, so that your right shoulder is closest to the wall.

Keeping your right foot firm and grounded this time, exhale your left leg on to your right inner calf. Again if you feel unstable, lightly place your right fingertips on the wall, or if you feel stable bring your hands in to prayer position. Ensure that your hips are level, and are both facing your front.

Allow the texture of your breath to be long, smooth and even.

On your next exhalation, release your left leg down and come to standing

in tadasana with your arms by your sides.

Everything Else:

Props required: Wall
Movement Type: Standing
Sub Movement Type-A: Balance
Sub Movement Type-B: Strengthening
Main Anatomical Focus: Legs
Secondary Anatomical Focus: Hips
Physiological Focus: Nervous System, Reproductive System

Therapeutic Focus: Flat Feet, Mild Depression, Stress

Contraindications:Do not practice this if you suffer from headache, Insomnia or Low Blood Pressure. If your suffer from High Blood Pressure do not raise your arms above your head.

Content Courtesy of Members Area

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