Tree Pose – Vrikshasana

Tree Pose or Vrksasana is a very beneficial pose to improve balance, focus and concentration.

Tree Pose – Vrikshasana


Category 

Balancing Pose

Chakra  

Muladhara Root Chakra

Meaning

Vrksa meaning tree

Benefits

Regular practice steadily and comfortably within a balanced yoga asana program:

  • Stimulates the Root Chakra and therefore balances the functions of the large intestines and adrenals
  • Strengthens your spine and improves balance and poise helps in neuro-muscular coordination
  • Strengthens and tones your ankles, knees, legs, and buttocks
  • Strengthens the tendons and the ligaments of your feet (helps to reduce the effects of flat feet)
  • Loosens the hip joints, groin, and inner thighs
  • Has a grounding and calming effect as it improves physical and mental balance
  • Improves concentration and mental faculties.

Instructions

How to come into the pose

  1. Stand straight, with your feet together.
  2. Raise your hands above your head and place your palms together, keeping them in line with your forehead.
  3. Inhale, raise your right foot and place it against your left inner thigh.
  4. Keep your focus on a point slightly above eye level (approximately 2 meters away), and breathe evenly.

Coming out of the pose

Gently bring your hands down. Release your right foot to the floor and repeat on the other side.

Alignment Cues

  1. Your foot should ideally be placed against the opposite inner thigh.
  2. Your hands are reaching toward the ceiling. Make sure to keep the roots of your thumbs in line with your forehead, not over your head and not in front of your face.
  3. Your elbows are slightly bent, and your shoulders are lifted only slightly.
  4. The knee of your upper foot is pointing sideways, rotating the leg at the hip joint without lifting your hip.
  5. Your spine is in a natural curve. Make sure not to “hang” into the lower back and not to lift the chest.

Duration of hold

  • Beginners: 30 seconds–1 minute on each side
  • Intermediate: 1–3 minutes on each side
  • Advanced: 3–5 minutes on each side

Modifications

  1. Make sure to rotate the working leg at the hip and place it wherever it reaches along the standing leg.
  2. You should not feel strain in the ankle or knee joint.
  3. The lifted foot can also be placed along the ankle or lower leg or along the inside of your knee (making sure to place the arch of the foot against the side of your knee, not the heel or ball of your foot).
  4. If you feel strain in your arms or shoulders, keep your hands in the Prayer Pose in front of your chest instead of reaching them up toward the ceiling.
  5. For anyone who might be in danger of losing balance and falling, it is recommended to practice this pose close to a wall and to take support if necessary.

Contra-indications

  • Ankle issues
  • Knee issues

Relevant Poses

Rest in Child’s Pose and then move on to Mountain Pose – Tadasana

For more yoga asanas and exercises, make sure to visit the Arhanta Yoga Asana Guide!