Downward Tree Posture, Vriksha Asana, Vriksh Asana, Vriks Pose, Vrksasana
Vrikshasana is a tree pose which means you are standing with your hand raised towards the sky. Adho-Mukha-Vrikshasana can be termed as a tilted tree pose where in your hands are supporting the entire body weight. This asana when done by beginners has to be done very carefully as balancing yourself on your hand cannot be that easy. Handstand is a natural fear of falling. So the basic pose will be described with the heels supported against a wall.
How to reach the stretch
- Perform Adho-Mukha-Svanasana (Downward-Facing Dog Pose) with your fingertips an inch or two away from a wall, hands shoulder-width.
- Now bend left knee and step the foot in, closer to the wall, but keep the right leg active by extending through the heel.
- Then take a few practice hops before you try to launch yourself upside down. Sweep your right leg through a wide arc toward the wall and kick your left foot off the floor, immediately pushing through the heel to straighten the left knee.
- As both legs come off the ground, engage your deep core abdominal muscles to help lift your hips over your shoulders.
- Hop up and down like this several times, each time pushing off the floor a little higher. Exhale deeply each time you hop.
- Eventually you’ll be able to kick all the way into the pose. At first your heels may crash into the wall, but again with more practice you’ll be able to swing your heels up lightly to the wall.
- If your armpits and groins are tight, your lower back may be deeply arched. To lengthen this area, draw your front ribs into your torso, reach your tailbone toward your heels, and slide your heels higher up the wall.
- Now squeeze the outer legs together and roll the thighs in. Hang your head from a spot between your shoulder blades and gaze out into the center. Stay in the position for some time and then relax. Be sure to alternate your kicking leg, one day right, next day left.
How to release the stretch
- To release, stay in the pose for 10 to 15 seconds, breathing deeply. Gradually work your way up to 1 minute.
- When you come down, be sure not to sink onto the shoulders. Keep your shoulder blades lifted and broad, and take one foot down at a time, each time with an exhalation. Stand straight for 30 seconds to 1 minute for relaxiation.
- Strengthen the shoulders, arms, and wrists.
- Stretches belly muscles.
- It improves the sense of balance.
- Calms the brain and helps relieve stress and mild depression.
- Not for the persons who have back, shoulder, neck injury.
- Don’t do this asana when you are suffering from headache, heart condition, high blood pressure, menstruation.
- If you are experienced with this pose, you can continue to practice it late into pregnancy. Don’t, however, take up the practice of Adho- Mukha-Vrikshasana after you become pregnant.