One of the fundamental poses in yoga is the mountain pose. This means that the correct detuning of this position gives practical skill in further controlling the body, for example, the ability to recognize the axis of the body and distribute weight at all points of support evenly. Unfortunately, most novice practitioners do not give her due attention, considering her not a pose at all, but simply standing still. We will try to dispel this myth and point out the undeniable merits of this asana.
The pose of the mountain ("tada" in Sanskrit - "mountain") or Samasthiti (in some schools it is called that way) from the side looks very simple: straight legs together, the vertical spine and arms lowered along the body down or folded at the level of the heart in namaste. It would seem that nothing complicated and globally important can be here.
But, as they say, the simplest in fact turns out to be the most difficult. If, having built the mountain’s pose, you close your eyes and focus on the position of the body in space, as well as the interaction with the floor, you will notice that the body sometimes sways slightly, the weight shifts from one foot to the other, and the chest tries to fall down and in. This is an indicator that the asana is built only at the expense of the basic muscles, without the participation of the basic, skeletal, which are much more important in the practice of yoga, and in general for quality movement.
The technique of detuning asana
Yoga teachers recommend the first few times to perform this pose in front of the mirror (full height) in order to capture the fine details and subtleties of muscle movement. So, the mountain pose in yoga is constructed as follows:
- Stand straight and connect the feet together with the inner arch. Lift and slightly spread out the toes, pulling them “like the rays of the sun”, and then press them to the floor, trying to maintain their stretched state.
- Straining the quadriceps (the front lines of the thighs), pull the patella up and slightly pull the little fob under you, activating the mule bandha. Buttocks should be in a light tone.
- Tighten the stomach slightly, directing the navel inward, straighten the shoulders and raise the sternum up, freeing the chest to open.
- Lower the shoulder blades and shoulders down, stretch the neck and crown of the head up, as if stretching the axis of the spine into the sky.
- Relax the muscles of the face, especially in the lower jaw, interbrow and temples. Breathe smoothly and calmly. The gaze is fixed in front of you, you can also close your eyes.
In order to correctly, and therefore correctly build a mountain pose, one should check the following points in the process of positioning the body:
- The weight in the feet should be distributed evenly over the entire plane, without shifting to the heel or thumbs, as beginners often do. Do not shift weight by one leg.
- The hips must be active, the hip joints tend to each other.
- The lumbar spine should not bend too much, it is important not to take the pelvis back, as often overly flexible gymnasts do in the pose of the mountain.
- The lower ribs should aim toward the back, not up. If this is not done, then the thoracic spine will bend too much, and the muscles in this area will overstrain.
- The position of the head is strictly vertical, often the person’s head hangs forward and slightly down on the neck, creating a strain on the spinal column.
What is the use of tadasana?
For many, it is not clear what such a simple-looking asana can give? In this case, it is worth rephrasing the quote of the famous Kozma Prutkov: “Look at the root!” and say, “follow the footsteps.” It is there that the main secret of the mountain posture is hidden. In the vast majority of cases, a person stands shifting body weight by one leg, sometimes imperceptibly, often consciously. Moreover, few people realize which part of the foot has more weight.
And this is really very important, since the bias in the foundation creates a bias in the shock absorbers of our body - the hip joints. Hence the pain in the knees, lower back, and in the long term, scoliotic posture. And if problems with the spine started, then all body systems will necessarily fail. And all because of the wrong position of the weight in the feet.
Recommendations of specialists
Experienced teachers often call the pose of the mountain magic, as it clearly makes it clear where the person has the main problem, and not only of a physical nature. Therefore, almost every teacher must include it in his asana complex, sometimes for a long time talking about the correct construction of the asana, causing bewilderment among beginners who have not yet realized its importance.
It is Tadasana that teaches a person the correct position of the spine in space, then the muscles do not experience constant overload and can even relax, despite the fact that the person is standing for a long time (this is very important for those who have a working day while standing).
Sometimes some curious visitors to yoga classes are interested: is the mountain pose and the dog pose the same thing? Indeed, some schools combine these concepts, misleading customers. The confusion arose due to the fact that some teachers are trying to clearly, in simple words, explain how to correctly position the body in space in the pose “dog face down” and use the phrase: “the body is like a hill: the top is the pelvis, and the legs and torso are two slopes” . Many beginners remember this phrase, and for them the dog pose is a mountain pose.
In conclusion, we can add that Tadasana does not have any contraindications - she can be performed in any condition: with a runny nose, a strong fit, problems with her knees, pregnant women, and even very weak people. The main thing is correctness and attentiveness to subtle inner sensations.