This pose can be practiced at anytime of day. Because it is so grounding and restorative, it's especially good for those times when you're feeling "tired but wired." But it has many other benefits too:
- calms an anxious mind
- revives tired muscles
- replenishes energy stores
- balances blood pressure
- soothes headaches
- alleviates PMS symptoms
- relieves insomnia
- soothes the nervous system
- can benefit patients with POTS (just make sure to exit slowly)
Be seated next to a wall with your left hip pressing into the wall. Begin to roll yourself onto your back and simultaneously swing your legs up the wall. You might need to do this quickly so you can get some momentum going. Once you've got your legs up the wall, make any adjustments so that your spine is straight and your hips are squared. The closer your hips are to the wall, the more stretch you will feel in the hamstrings. This pose is usually held for at least five minutes and up to thirty minutes. If it's your first time trying this pose, I would recommend starting with just ten deep breaths and increasing your duration slowly. This pose trains the circulatory system to balance blood pressure and blood circulation, so your body may need some time to get used to this. To come out of this pose, bend your knees into your chest and roll yourself over to the side. Press yourself up to sit very slowly.
VARIATION: FOLDED BLANKET OR BOLSTER UNDER SACRUM
Adding a folded blanket under your sacrum may lessen the intensity of the hamstring stretch and magnifies the pose's benefits by making it more of an inversion (head below the heart). You can add the blanket after you've gotten into position, or you can start sitting on top of it before you roll onto your back, whichever feels easier to you.
VARIATION: KNEES BENT, FEET FLAT AGAINST THE WALL
Bending the knees and placing your feet flat against the wall will help if your hamstrings are tight. It also puts gentle pressure on your lower belly, massaging the internal organs.
VARIATION: YOGA STRAP AROUND THE THIGHS
Securing a yoga strap around the thighs eliminates any muscle engagement in this pose. With the strap, your muscles don't need to work to keep your legs together, so you can completely release into the pose.
VARIATION: LEGS ON CHAIR
You can use a chair instead of a wall for this pose. This completely eliminates the hamstring stretch and allows the legs to completely relax and surrender to gravity.
HOW DID IT GO?
If you tried any of these variations, I'd love to know how it went for you! Tag me on Instagram and use the hashtag #spoonieyogatribe in your photos for a chance to be featured on my page! Or post a photo in our private Facebook group to show off your progress! As a part of your membership, you can get personalized feedback on your poses.