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  • Writer's pictureChristina V. Mills

Learning Headstand for Beginners


Students Practicing Ashtanga Led Half Primary Series

Headstand is one of the most important postures you can practice. It helps to calm the nervous system, counteracts the effects of gravity by allowing fluid in the body to flow out of the lower extremities and lengthening the spine, and increases balance and awareness of your body in space.


Never kick up into headstand because you can injure your neck. Work on lifting the legs with control. In Ashtanga yoga, the goal is to lift the legs straight using core strength.


How to:

  • Begin in Downward Dog and lower the knees into tabletop.

  • With the forearms on the floor, keep the elbows shoulder distance apart and clasp the fingers together.

  • Place the crown of the head on the floor and hold the back of your head with your open palms.

  • Lift the hips up and straighten the legs. Walk the feet in.

  • On an inhale, lift the left up off the floor and straight up overhead. Maintain a straight back, trying not to arch. Hold for 25 breaths.

{Pause}


It's common for people new to headstand to try to kick up. However, this is dangerous because strength has not yet been developed to maintain the headstand. If you walk the feet in and the legs don't lift up, just pause. The strength will eventually come. Until then, ground through the arms and use the strength of the core to keep trying to lift the legs for 25 breaths. Soon, the legs will come up.




 

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