Pose of the Month – Supported Shoulderstand – Salamba Sarvangasana

Welcome to our month of Wonder!

As summer comes winding down… or if your summer has been anything like mine, as your summer comes screeching into fall 😉 can we take some time, even a moment to find the wonder in this stunning month.

So, so, often, we are CRAMMING things into August. I am no different. And though there is no way to stop some of the urgency, can we flip some of that on its head, or invert it 🙂 and take gaze into the wonder that is our lives.

The Noun definition of wonder includes the following: “a feeling of surprise mingled with admiration, caused by something beautiful, unexpected, unfamiliar, or inexplicable.”

In my yoga practice, this is something I encounter all the time! Some days this feeling is fleeting, and other days on the mat I am overwhelmed by my connection with wonder, to the point where I cannot put my mind to a definition.

That is THE space.

One such space to explore our sense of wonder, and to explore altering our view and taking time to look at the world in a whole new way is through our pose of the month: Salamba Sarvangasana-Supported Shoulderstand. In any inversion that we do, we give ourselves the time for pratyahara, and one-pointed focus, which we have discussed in recent blogs, and the space to note our own wonder, that which springs from within.

Salamba Sarvangasana:

  • Start in a reclined position. Place soles of the feet on the mat, about hips distance apart.
  • Press through the feet, and on an inhale lift the hips. Place a blanket, pillow, or bolster under the hips. Allow the edge of the prop to rest at the edge of the iliac crest (the butterfly wings at the top of the pelvis) so the low back can relax into space.
  • Draw the knees in towards the chest, and straighten the legs as much as feels good.
  • Feel free to play with the legs, let them flow apart, or scissor away from one another. Explore the wonder of the pose.
  • Close the eyes and breath. See if you can find the floating sensation in the legs, the lightness coming from within, rather than from the muscles.

Benefits of Supported Shoulderstand:

  • Low back relief
  • Ease on the joints
  • Single-pointed focus.
  • Activates Soothing portion of nervous system the “tend & befriend” rather than the “fight or flight”, telling the body it’s safe to relax

Play around and relax!