Tadasana: The Mountain Pose

May 27, 2011

Today's blog is dedicated to one of the most basic poses in any style of yoga that we practice. Her name is Tadasana (or also known as Samasthiti). Tada means Mountain and its meaning is "to stand firm and still like a mountain".

Tadasana is the key pose of the standing poses. It is used as a physical barometer, a place to go back and forth between standing poses in which we can appreciate how the body feels after the previous asana (yoga posture).

To perform it, use the principle of co-activation in Tadasana, distributing the weight of the body evenly through the feet.
Begin by pressing the back of your heels into the ground. Next, spread your weight across the forefoot, from the balls of your feet to the outer edges.

Activate your legs and knees by contracting your quads and lifting your kneecaps. Aligns the leg bones, femur and tibia, avoiding hyperextension of the knees as it can cause misalignment of the leg bones. If you tend to overextend, contract your hamstrings to bend your knees and realign your femur and tibia.

Balance the internal and external rotation of the femurs, matching the force that draws the legs apart with the force that draws the legs together, to create a sense of stability and firmness in the pose.

Move the energy up to the pelvis and stabilize it by co-activating the hip flexors and extensors. It balances the extension and flexion of the lower back and gently contracts the abdominal muscles to prevent the lower ribs from being deformed forward. Finally, it aligns the spine so that it assumes its natural curvature and fits effortlessly over the pelvis.

The benefits of practicing Tadasana correctly are the strengthening of the spine, a better alignment of the body, the toning of the buttocks and the delay of the degenerative effects of old age in the spine, legs and feet.

Start practicing Tadasana today and you too will notice its benefits.

"You want to stay on your head, but you don't even know how to stay on your feet." --BKS Iyengar

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