Standing poses help strengthen the body and fortify the spirit. They energize us physically, mentally, and emotionally. Standing poses coach us into be strong and flexible simultaneously. Through practicing standing poses regularly, we are able to face our daily challenges - both internally and externally - with confidence, dignity, balance, grace, flexibility, and focus.
The more defined our standing poses, the more energized and unrestricted we feel. Learning the specific muscular and skeletal actions in standing poses forms a foundation for protecting ourselves from injury and to experiencing the unique benefits of them.
Standing poses have empowering benefits: strength, flexibility, endurance, balance, and joy! Make a point every day to practice your favorite standing pose.
Here is one of my favorites - Mountain Pose:
- Begin standing in Mountain Pose (Tadasana), with your arms at your sides. Distribute your weight evenly across both feet, grounding down equally through your inner ankles, outer ankles, big toes, and baby toes.
- Shift your weight to your left foot. Bend your right knee and adjust your position so the center of your pelvis is directly over your left foot. Then, adjust your hips so your right hip and left hip are aligned.
- Rest your hands on your hips and lengthen your tailbone toward the floor. Then, press your palms together in prayer position at your chest, with your thumbs resting on your sternum. You may use a chair for balance instead.
- Fix your gaze gently on one, unmoving point in front of you.
- Draw down through your left foot. Pop your right foot onto the ground or place onto your left calf or thigh. Do not rest the foot on your knee joint.
- Inhale as you extend your arms overhead, reaching your fingertips to the sky. Rotate your palms inward to face each other. If your shoulders are more flexible, you can press your palms together in prayer position, overhead.
- Hold for up to one minute. To release the pose, step back into Mountain Pose. Repeat for the same amount of time on the opposite side.