In Sanskrit language, Ardha means Half, Sarva stands for All, Anga represents body and Asana means Pose. Ardh Sarvangasana yoga pose is also named as Half Shoulder Stand Pose and Half Candlestick Pose. This asana is defined as preparatory pose for Sarvangasana as it helps to make your body ready for the typical practice.
For those who experience trouble while attempting Sarvangasana, they should try Ardh-Sarvangasana. To do this, follow the initial sequence of Sarvangasana, then keep your hands on your lower back and continue to breathe normally; lift your legs as high as possible and then bring them down but first bend them from the knees. When you are successful with Ardh-Sarvangasana, only then proceed to try Sarvangasana.
Steps to do Ardh Sarvangasana:
- When you are doing this asana as a beginner, start by taking some support from blankets as your body cannot reach the final pose so easily. You need to collect some folded blankets on the mat.
- Practitioner need to lie down while putting hips on a pillow and the torso must be allowed to rest over four chip type foam blocks and the mat is desired to be folded from the top side.
- Note that the upper edge of the shoulders must be lined up with chip foam block’s edge. Use headrests in such a way that it stays in natural position.
- Lie on your back while keeping your knees bent and maintaining feet soles flat on the surface.
- Now try to lift your legs up from the mat, prefer to lift one after another to make to process easier for your body.
- Try to hug the knee of the right side with the center of the chest.
- The practitioner needs to engage Bandhas in a much-controlled manner while peeling vertebrae in an upward
- Keep pressing with feet soles until a shape is V is formed with the torso.
- You can provide support of your hands by placing them on your back.
- As you try to increase space between your rib cage and hips, all the Bandhas must be engaged in this process.
- The practitioner should feel some space in his hip sockets. At this moment all Bandhas get engaged in this asana.
- Feel that earth energy is flowing to your body through your head, neck, upper arms and shoulders. Your body must feel like it is spreading ahead to legs through the torso.
- Practice deep breathing and hold this pose for few seconds as a beginner. You can try to increase timing as your body allows with time.
- Now come back to the normal position in slow motion; all your core muscles must be engaged to bring your body to a normal
- You can try little bridge and knee to chest pose as preparatory pose before performing Ardh Sarvangasana.
Benefits Of Ardh Sarvangasana:
This asana stimulates every part of the body and makes them flexible, swift, energetic and strong. It helps in avoiding anxiety, fatigue and stress. This asana keeps distant the problems of constipation, head-ache, eye pain, mumps, diseases of the heart and the liver. Ardh sarvangsana assists in purifying the blood. It stimulates the digestive system. It maintains good testicular health, regularizes heart beats, and helps in preventing elephantiasis, asthma, cough, dysmenorrhoea, gonorrhoea, infertility, obesity and vaginal diseases. Sarvangasana stimulates the functioning of the lungs. Ardh sarvangsana helps to avoid impotency, reduced sexual-urge and erectile dysfunction. It activates the thyroid gland and assists the nervous system and the spinal cord in functioning systematically. It also has a positive effect on the vocal cords.
Sarvangasana is the second best asana after Sirsasana. This asana gives rise to the feeling of youthfulness because it stimulates almost every part of the body.
Note: This asana should not be performed for more than five minutes in a single attempt. Try Shavasana for a while before repeating. Do not repeat for more than three times. In the beginning, attempt only once.
This asana is prohibited for children less than 14 years of age. Any man and woman of more than 14 years of age can do the asana.
Some have been able to try various different actions while they are in Sarvangasana. The actions are described below:
- Keeping both the legs in v-shape,
- Moving legs back and forth,
- Turning the head left and right,
- Trying the Padmasana position with legs while they are already raised upwards,
- Moving your legs as if cycling,
- Staying in Sarvangasana position without the support of the hands.
But these actions are not compulsory.