Five Benefits of Mountain Pose
26th August 2019
It might look like you’re just standing there, but Mountain (Tadasana in Sanskrit) is an active pose that helps improve posture, keeps joints healthy and enhances our wellbeing in many ways. In Tadasana, we establish a healthy, functional posture and learn to engage our muscles without creating tension. As the ‘mother of all poses’ the muscle and joint alignments, as well as the mindset you learn in Tadasana, are applied every time you do a standing yoga pose. Read on to discover 5 amazing benefits.
Mountain pose aligns the head over the shoulders, the shoulders over the hips and the hips over the feet. This ‘joint stacking’ ensures the weight is evenly distributed through the muscles and joints. The body is balanced, with no excessive stress being put on any particular joint.
Prevents Joint & Muscle Pain
In Tadasana, bones and joints are in correct alignment reducing wear and tear of joint surfaces and delaying the onset of arthritis. Alignment is especially important in preventing or relieving backache and muscular pain. It also means that muscles and ligaments are less strained and can be used more efficiently, reducing exercise fatigue.
Increases Self Confidence
Standing tall is not just a figure of speech. It’s dictionary definition is to “behave in a confident or brave manner and with the ability to deal with any situation”. Literally, standing tall in Mountain Pose helps us to feel that confidence and resilience. Try it now. Stand up straight and tall, chest lifted, shoulders back, gaze forwards. Then try the opposite; look down at the floor, round the shoulders, allow the torso to collapse downwards. What’s the difference? How does it make you feel? Which do you choose for yourself?
Facilitates Deep Breathing
Our breathing is so much more important than most of us realise, it helps to regulate important functions such as heart rate, blood pressure and levels of stress hormones. Standing with the chest lifted and the spine long means that there is much more space for the lungs to expand fully. When your chest is constricted by your posture, you can only draw a small amount of air into your lungs and so have to breathe more rapidly. This activates the body’s stress response, making us agitated and ill at ease. Many of us live like this without even knowing it.
Improves Overall Wellbeing
Tadasana helps to create space within the body allowing the internal organs to work more efficiently. It stimulates the nervous system, digestive system and blood circulation. In addition, it improves concentration, tones the abdomen and buttocks, builds strength in the feet and legs and eases sciatica. The steadiness experienced in the pose also helps to quieten the mind.
How to practice Mountain Pose
Stand with your feet either together or about 6 inches apart, if thats more comfortable. Spread your weight evenly between your feet.
Lift the toes, spread them wide and place them back down on the mat. Ground your feet down firmly, feel your connection with the earth. Engage the muscles of the foot and ankle, activating them without creating tension.
Straighten your legs, lift your kneecaps, continue to activate the muscles of the legs and buttocks without tension. Slightly rotate the thighs inwards.
Draw the tailbone down towards the floor making sure the pelvis remains neutral
Keep the belly relaxed as you inhale deeply, gently draw the belly backwards on each exhale. Keep the chest lifted and draw your shoulders back and away from the ears. Your ears, shoulders and hips should all be in one line.
Visulise a golden thread, tied to the backs of your ankles, draw the thread up through your pelvis, spine, neck and out through the crown of the head. Lifting you towards the sky. Keep breathing deeply and steadily for several breaths.