Saturday, November 25, 2017
Yoga

HALA ASANA - (THE PLOUGH POSTURE)

Hala Asana or The Plough Posture is a valuable asana as it has some unique qualities and excellent benefits. It is an extreme forward bending exercise which promotes strength and flexibility in all the regions of the back and neck. 

It can be performed in two ways; the only difference is in the position of the hands. Beginners can practice the easier one which is explained in method 1. 

How to do :

Method 1

  1. Lie flat on the back with your body straight and stretched out. Bring the heels and toes together. Put the palms on the floor and keep them close to the body on both sides. 
  2. Stretch out the legs and toes. Inhale and simultaneously raise both heads upwards till they come to a vertical position. 
  3. Exhale and simultaneously start lowering the legs towards the head area. Try to touch the floor in front of the head with the toes. Go only as far as possible for you. After exhaling, keep breathing normally till the whole posture is completed. Remain in this position for about 8 seconds. 
  4. Start returning the back to the floor. Let the back roll down on the floor inch by inch. This should be done very slowly and smoothly. Keep the legs and toes quite tight all along during the returning phase. Now you have completed one round of this posture and relax for 6 to 8 seconds. 

Method 2

  1. Lie flat on the back with your body straight and stretched out. Bring the heels and toes together. Put the palms on the floor and keep them close to the body on both sides. Stretch out the legs and toes. 
  2. Inhale and raise both the hands upwards in a parallel way. Take the hands backward with the back of the palms on the floor. Finish inhaling at the time the hands have touched the floor. Exhale.
  3. Inhale and simultaneously lift both the legs upwards to a vertical position. 
  4. Exhale and simultaneously lower the legs towards the floor in front of the head and above the hands. Put your toes on the floor. If you cannot touch the floor with the toes, go only as far as possible. Breathe normally. Now you are in plough posture. In this position, your legs should remain straight and close to one another. Do not bend the knees and the arms, hands and palms should be parallel to one another. Remain in this position for about 10 seconds.
  5. The returning process should be done very gradually and in a controlled way. First return only the legs, let the hands remain on the floor. While returning the legs, let the shoulders roll back first and then the flanks, small of the backs, hip and lastly the thighs, legs and heels inch by inch. When the heels have touched the floor, lift both hands up and return them in a parallel way to the floor. Put the palms on the floor. Now you have completed one round of the best form of the plough posture. Relax for 6 to 8 seconds.

Restrictions :

Start with one round on the first day and gradually increase to a maximum of four rounds. Relax for sometime between the rounds. 

If the toes do not comfortably reach the floor, keep the hand on the back supporting the back muscles until they become more flexible.

Major Benefits :

Energizes and nourishes the sexual glands and brings strength and vitality to them. It has medicinal effect for impotency and frigidity. Exercises every inch of backbone and surpasses all other asana to bring flexibility to the spine. Reduces excess weight without weakening the body.  Improves the blood circulation and nourishes many of the essential internal organs. Regular practice of this asana maintains inner balance and helps to develop mental and physical poise.

Watch Video instructions to do Hala-Asana