As a kid you probably played around going upside. Most kid swill attempt some variation of a shoulder-stand at some point and for good reason, it feels good and it’s fun.
However, as we grow older we stop going upside down. Which is a shame because there are lot of physical and mental benefits linked to getting your head below your heart. Luckily if you try yoga this will certainly change. As many yoga poses are so inversions – or upside down poses. The most well known are probably headstand, handstand and shoulderstand but there are a number of other poses that fall under the category, some less intense and some more intense. So why is so good for you? Here are some of the main benefits:
- It reverses the blood flow and improves circulation
- Helps the lymphatic system get rid of toxins in the body
- Helps build strength in the body
- Can help to build confidence – once you make it upside down, e.g. in a headstand, probably after several failed attempts, it is a confidence booster
- Some inversions can be very relaxing, lowering you heart rate (the heart isn’t working as hard if your head is below your heart)
So why not give it a try. I am by no means suggesting you try headstand right now, you should only attempt that with a help of a trained yoga teacher. But here is a gentle inversion you can try at home, before you find a yoga class to go to:)
- Legs up the wall pose (Viparita Karani)
Go to a wall with plenty of free space. Sit down with your side to the wall and bend your knees. Then slowly rotate your upper body down, lying down the floor, and your legs up in the air using the wall as support. This way will help get the hips close to the wall, which can be a struggle if you lie straight down and try to move your hips towards wall. Stay for 5 – 10 minutes, close your eyes, bring your arms by your side (palms facing the the ceiling) and breathe calmly with your nose.