Parvatasana The Mountain Pose

How to Do Parvatasana The Mountain Pose in Yoga, Check Health Benefits

Health is not just absence of disease, but it is an active expression of life. Life is all about how to be joyful, caring, and loving. Yoga is a way of living and offers holistic health. Countless individuals are opting for Yoga Asana because benefits accrued by being a regular Yoga practitioner are numerous. Some notable ones include- Improves overall health and well-being, gives strength, stamina, agility, detoxifies the body and builds the immune system.

Yoga Asanas are the Yogic exercises or postures. The Sage Patanjali in his definite text defines Yoga Sutras as – ‘Sthiram Sukham Asanam’, which means Asana is a Yoga Posture that keeps the body in a steady as well as comfortable state. In Classical Yoga or Ashtanga Yoga, i.e. the eightfold Yoga path of self-actualisation – Asana is on the third step.  Yoga Asanas or Postures consists of cultural Asanas and meditative poses. Yoga asana aims towards attaining physical strength, agility, balance and stability. Yoga Asanas keep the body and mind fit and free from diseases. Yoga Asanas make the physical body fit for advance Yoga practices and going further to attain the supreme goal of spiritual union with the higher consciousness.

Today we will start with the basic Yoga Asana –the mountain pose. Founder Shri Yogendraji modified this Yoga Asana so that the common householder can easily do it but ensuring that the benefits are in intact.

Yoga Asana- Listed below are steps to perform Yogendra Parvatasana and its variations. Parvatasana is a cultural Asana–for the lateral (upward) stretching of the spine (a classical Yoga Asana or pose).

Yogendra Parvatasana; mountain pose- As the name suggests, it derives the benefits from the qualities of a mountain- stability, fixity and strength. This posture has three variations to provide all-around stretch and twist to spine.

The-Mountain-Pose

Classical pose:

C1. Starting position:

  1. Sit in Padmasana / Sukhasana, keeping the hands on their respective sides. Chest thrown well forward, keep the neck straight, the abdomen in normal contour, the chin drawn in and eyes focused on a single point straight ahead.

 

C2. The sequence of steps:

  1. Inhaling, in 3 seconds, raise both the arms together, from their respective sides, for an upward stretch.
  2. Join the palms to each other in this upward stretched position of arms. Either interlace the fingers or keep the palms joined. Keep the hands close to the respective ears, abdomen maintained in normal contour and back straight. Avoid bending the arms at the elbows and wrists, keeping them stretched and straight. Gaze fixed at a single point ahead.
  3. Maintain this fully stretched position (palms joined), for 6 seconds, retaining the breath (final position).
  4. Returning to starting position: exhaling, in 3 seconds, first turn the palm position outwards and then, keeping the arms straight, bring it down to the sides to complete 1 round.

 

C3. Recommended practice:

  1. Practice 4 rounds without pause.

D. Variation-1:

D1. Starting position:

  1. Sit in starting position as in C1, above.
  2. Raise both the arms together from their respective sides to join the palms, keeping the hands straight, close to the ears. Fingers can be interlaced, or palms joined.

 

D2. The sequence of steps:

  1. Inhaling, in 3 seconds, bend to the right, keeping the head between the arms. Let the spine arch sideways, with no movement below the waist.
  2. Immediately, exhaling, return to the centre position, in 3 seconds.
  3. Inhaling, in 3 seconds, repeat to the left to complete 1 round.

 

E. Variation-2:

E1. Starting position: same as D1, above.

E2. The sequence of steps:

  1. Exhaling, twist your spine pivoting from the lower end of spine towards the right side, maintaining fixity below the waist. This is an axial movement; hence maintain the upper torso as one unit while twisting. Complete this step, in 3 seconds, while exhaling.
  2. Immediately, inhaling, untwist the spine and return to centre position, in 3 seconds.
  3. Exhaling, now twist towards left, as explained in step 1, above, in 3 seconds.
  4. Inhaling, immediately untwist the spine and return to centre position, in 3 seconds.

F. Variation-3:

F1. Starting position: same as D1, above.

F2. The sequence of steps:

  1. Inhaling, bend backwards keeping the head locked in between the arms. Let the spine arch backwards, with no movement below the waist. Complete this step, in 3 seconds, while inhaling.
  2. Immediately, exhaling, start bending forward (waist up) keeping the head locked in between the arms. Let the spine arch forward, with no movement below the waist, to bring the body parallel to the ground. Complete this step, in 3 seconds, while exhaling.
  3. Maintain this forward stretched position for 6 seconds, suspending the breath (final position).
  4. Inhaling, lift the head and arms and return to the centre position, in 3 seconds.

 

G. Returning to starting position (for the variations): exhaling, in 3 seconds, first turn the palm position outwards and then, keeping the arms straight, bring it down to the sides to complete one cycle of the above variations.

 

H. Recommended practice (for all variations):

  1. Complete one cycle of each variation, without pause. Practice 2 cycles of the above variations.

 

I. Limitations / Contraindications:

  1. People suffering from spinal injury and spinal abnormalities.
  2. Frozen shoulder and arthritis.
  3. Hypertension and serious cardiac complaints (especially Variation-3)

 

J. Benefits

  1. Corrects minor postural defects of the spine and straightens the muscles of the back.
  2. Stretches all the abdominal and pelvic muscles and loosens the hips.
  3. Exercises the inactive waist zone, and helps reduce fatty and flabby abdomen.
  4. The unnatural curvature of the spine and minor displacements of the vertebrae are corrected.
  5. Internal organs in the abdominal region get proper massage–improved blood circulation; viscera normally rest on the pelvic floor.
  6. Prolapse (slipping down) of the uterus is improved by providing natural support to the viscera.
  7. Blood circulation in the vertebral region improves, and the efficiency of the nerves coming out of the vertebra is improved.
  8. The unnatural curvature of the spine and minor displacements of the vertebrae are corrected.
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