Upsides of Being Upside Down

Inversion exercises – positioning the body upside down or at an inverted angle – offer a myriad benefits beyond just turning your world upside down. From yoga poses like headstands to inversion tables and gravity boots, these techniques are a great way to improve posture, circulation and balance… here are five to add to your routine, ranging from beginner to advanced…

Legs Up the Wall Pose (Novice): Lie on your back with your hips close to a wall. Extend your legs vertically, resting them against the wall. This gentle inversion allows for easy relaxation and promotes blood flow back to the heart, relieving tired legs and compressed spines and reducing swelling in the feet and ankles.

Dolphin Pose (Intermediate): Start on your hands and knees, then lower onto your forearms. Lift your hips toward the ceiling, keeping your head and neck aligned with your arms. This yoga pose provides a mild inversion, stretching the shoulders, hamstrings, and calves while improving core strength and stability.

Supported Shoulder Stand (Intermediate): Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Lift your legs toward the ceiling, supporting your lower back with your hands. Keep your elbows close together and use your arms to support your body weight as you extend your legs overhead as straight as possible. This inversion improves circulation, strengthens the core, and stimulates the thyroid gland.

Headstand (Advanced): Start in a kneeling position with your forearms on the ground, clasping your hands together. Place the crown of your head on the floor and lift your hips, straightening your legs upward. Slowly lift one leg at a time until both are extended vertically, or pike if you have the core strength to do so. Headstands enhance balance, focus, and core strength, while also stimulating the lymphatic system and relieving stress.

Handstand (Advanced): Begin in a standing position with your feet hip-width apart. Bend forward and place your hands on the ground, shoulder-width apart, fingers splayed and pressed to the ground. Shift your weight onto your hands and kick your legs upward one at at time or in a pike depending on your level, then balance with your body fully inverted and your spine straight. Handstands build upper body strength, improve proprioception, and require coordination and control.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *