Sarvangasana is known as shoulder stand pose in English. Sarv is a Sanskrit word which means ‘entire’. In this asana the whole body is balanced on the shoulders. This asana is called the mother of all the asanas. It has many health benefits.
Steps to do Sarvangasana
Lie down on the yoga mat comfortably. Breathe normally. Keep your arms by the side of your body.
Keep your arms along the side of your body and bend your knees. Keep your feet on the floor and now exhale and try to lift your legs away from the floor facing towards the roof. Take support of your arms by holding the body from the back.
Slowly lift your legs, back from the ground. Keep your palms at the back to support your back. The weight of the body should be on the shoulders and arms and not on the head.
Keep the back straight and firm and toes pointing towards the roof. The back of your body should be 90degrees to the floor. Your chin should touch the chest. Hold this position for at least 30seconds or as long as you are comfortable.
Breathe normally and the elbows should be touching the floor when you are holding your back for support. Beginners can try doing this asana with the support of a wall at the beginning.
To get back into the original position bend the knees and get back the legs to the ground. Slowly and steadily get back into normal position and keep breathing normally.
Benefits of Sarvangasana
It stretches the spinal and helps in the functioning of the nervous system.
Stimulates thyroid and parathyroid gland.
It helps in proper functioning of the circulatory system, digestive system and respiratory system.
It stops hair fall as blood good oxygenated blood is supplied to the head.
Good for eyesight and for skin care. It protects the skin for early wrinkles, pimples and early aging factors.
This asana helps in getting relief from constipation and varicose veins.
Women should not perform this asana during pregnancy and menstruation period.
People suffering from any heart related problems should avoid doing this asana or consult a physician before starting this asana.
Any person who has any back injuries or any operations on the back should consult a physician.
People suffering from high blood pressure, slip disc, spondylosis, neck pain should consult a physician before starting this asana.
The asana can be performed by starting with Halasana or plough pose. Sarvaganasana can be performed on a strong chair with the legs resting on the chair and the shoulders and neck are supported with bolsters. With the support of the legs of the chairs lift the body and stay in this position for a few seconds.
Another variation is Eka Pada Sarvangasana. In this after taking the position one leg is kept perpendicular to the floor while the other leg is kept parallel to the floor. Repeat the same by alternating the legs. Hold it in the same position for 30 seconds and slowly come back to the normal position