The tree pose : Vrikshasana

I chose Vrikshasana as it is one of my favorite pose. It instantly makes me feel calm, secure, and grounded.
As a beautiful symbol of deployment to the sky, keeping  at the same time the feet firmly anchored to the floor, this pose represent to me the ability  to blossom while keeping at the same time  measure, balance, and sense of reality.
This pose may seem to be an easy relaxing pose, but when closing the eyes, it can be a redoubtable balance exercise.
How to execute ?
Stand in Tadasana, both arms by the side of your body, feet width apart.
Shift your weight slightly onto the left foot, grounding the inner foot firm to the floor, and bend your right knee. Reach down with your right hand and grab your right ankle.
The sole of the foot should be placed flat and firmly against the inner left thigh, if possible, toes pointing toward the floor.
Lengthen your tailbone toward the floor.
Make sure  to keep your left leg  straight. Find your balance. Do not hesitate to firmly press the right foot sole against the inner thigh and resist with the outer left leg.
Once  done, inhale, and slowly raise your arms over your head from the side, pressing  your palms together in a prayer position in front of the heart.
Gaze straight ahead at any fixed point on the floor about 4 or 5 feet away. A steady gaze helps maintain a steady balance.
Ensure that your spine is straight. Keep taking in long deep breaths for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
How to deepen the Pose?
You can challenge your balance by practicing this pose with your eyes closed, in order  to try to  balance without any anchor point around.
How to exit the pose?
With slow exhalation, slowly  bring down your hands from the sides, and release the right leg.
Stand tall in tadasana, and repeat with the other leg.
Beginners tips :

  • Use a wall if you have trouble balancing.
  • If you are having trouble balancing with your arms above the head, keep your palms together in front of your chest.
  • If the raised foot have a tendency to slide down , you may use  a mat or towel  between the raised-foot sole and the standing inner thigh.

Benefits of the pose:
As for many asana, the practice of Tree pose is good for both mental and body. It brings balance and equilibrium to the mind, and helps to concentrate, calm down, and well performed it gives the student a comforting feeling of body control.
This pose is an invigorating pose that leaves you in a state of rejuvenation, as it stretches the legs, back and  arms, and opens the hips.
It also strengthens thighs, calves, ankles, and spine, stretches the groins and inner thighs, chest and shoulders, Improves sense of balance and may relieve sciatica.
Contraindications and Cautions

  • Headache
  • Insomnia
  • Low blood pressure
  • High blood pressure: Don’t raise arms overhead

Veronique Blavec.

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