Tadasana or “Mountain Pose”
Person’s with PD can often develop a stooped posture (see left below), much like the rest of the population who spend 8-10hours a day slumped over their computer (see right below).
Tadasana is considered one of the most beneficial yoga postures… it is a great way to re-establish a tall spine, improve posture and promote confidence. Although it seems quite simple to “stand”, there are lots of pieces to this puzzle, especially to overcome bad posture habits.
- Improved posture and suppleness of spine
- Addresses ankle, knees and hip joints and gain control over muscular movement
- Strengthens obliques and prevents hernias
- Improved balance, respiration, digestion, waste elimination, etc.
- Especially in PD, certain associated medication can cause low blood pressure and associated light-headedness. Move slowly when getting into a standing posture.
- stand firmly on the ground feet hip width apart, rooting down through the 3-points of the feet: ball of baby toe, ball of big toe, heel
- engage your legs together like you are squeezing an invisible block between them
- use that energy to slightly rotate your thighs inward, creating space to drop your tailbone (like a plumb line straight down between your heels)
- engage your core by bringing your navel in and up
- … are you breathing?
- let your ribcage relax, but open your chest, rolling your should back and down
- have your arms rest at your side, palms facing forward
- stack the vertebrae in your neck so your head sits directly between your shoulders and “humble” your chin slightly
- inhale and feel your breath coming through the floor, up your legs, torso, and chest
- exhale and allow your breath to continue upwards through your head and out the top of your crown, creating a nice long spine
- optional: inhale and gather the energy creating in your lower body and raise your arms above your head, as wide as you need to be mindful that your shoulders stay down your back and ribs remain tucked. have your palms face each other and feel the energy moving between them. exhale to release your arms and the posture.
so these steps may seem daunting at first, but yoga is a practice and it takes time to replace bad habits with good ones, even in something as “simple” as standing.
So, stand tall and confident, and feel a new-found new sense of strength and balance in how your approach the world. much love.