Proprioception is a very important aspect in Yoga training. As the beginner, knowing and getting awareness about proprioception is the key for the further journey in Yoga practice. Let us discuss the few basic points and clues of SARVANGASANA practice.
Name: Sarva= all, Anga= parts, Asana=pose.
Meaning: All parts support pose (or) Shoulder stand. This is next to Sirshasana (headstand) in giving the benefits, hence also called as queen of asanas.
Introduction: Base of Support (BOS) is the ground area on which the body is suspended. If we see the pose from the side view, Sarvangasana, an inverted pose, with the body contact like two elbows behind, shoulders in the middle and back of the head in front. Altogether it is a triangle. In this position the body from thorax to toes is vertical and its whole weight is on the shoulders (middle part of BOS). This is still near the neck. The blood vessels, pharynx, tracheal rings will be part of this pressure. Hence the load on the Thyroid gland, in particular, is the great benefit from this asana. Thyroxin (T3) from thyroid gland is for metabolism of a cell. Thyroid gland constriction with lot of weight through it surely compress for a while. When the pose is released, the blood flow will replenish the nutrients and encourage the thyroid function than before. This is how the two extreme conditions like hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism can be normalized that is homeostasis. So, with constant efforts, gravity can assist the blood vessels structures and their flow and the thyroid detoxification. General stress which suppresses the Pituitary gland is also one of the causes of thyroid imbalance. Awareness is the observation of on these changes during practice or on the thyroid gland, or on eyebrow center can reduce the stress and there by thyroid imbalances. Secondly, with such weight bearing, the parathyroid gland releases Parath hormone, which controls the calcium metabolism. Hence awareness about these changes at the neck can give much more benefits. This has already invented in ancient days as VISHUDDHI chakra.
Step-1: Samasthitihi (Supine lying)
Step-2: Inhale, raise the lower limbs to 900
Step-3: Exhale, lift the pelvis and support them with palms.
Step-4: Inhale and adjust the head, elbows to allow the weight onto the shoulders (FINAL POSE). Maintain comfortably for 5-10 breaths.
Step-5: Exhale, lower the legs beyond the head
Step-6: Inhale, slowly and drop the palms, lower each vertebra onto the floor and lower limbs to 900
Step-7: Exhale, bring the lower limbs onto the ground (supine lying)
Step-8: Observe for a minute.
Counterpose: Shashankasana (or) Chakrasan (or) Matsyasana which reverses the pressure at the neck region (VISHUDDHI chakra). The mechanical processing of Basal ganglia (Balance) and cerebellum (coordination) is the proprioception.
- Keep the whole weight only onto the shoulders.
- Avoid stiffness of the lower limbs.
- Bring the chest to the chin but never the chin towards the chest.
- Avoid chin tuck or Jalandhara bandha until it is under strict guidance.