Did you know that headstand is considered the king of all yoga poses? And so is a handstand! I’m still not able to do the handstand properly, but with consistent practice, I hope I will get there soon.
On the other hand, headstand has been one of my favorite poses since the beginning of my yoga journey. I practice it at least two times a week. Both postures may seem like a funny gymnastic trick, but they actually have a lot of health benefits if you are doing them the right way. I’d recommend you try them with your yoga teacher first, and then slowly start incorporating them into your own practice. If you have a healthy back and neck and you KNOW how to do those poses, then you should check the TOP 7 health benefits they offer, bellow!
1. Improve Blood Flow To The Eyes, Head And Scalp
Headstand and handstand are awesome postures if you want to send your nutrient-rich blood and extra oxygen to your head. This also means more of it will be getting to your eyes and help you prevent macular degeneration and other eye issues. With increased blood flow to your head, your body will also deliver extra nutrients and oxygen to your scalp, thereby improving nutrient delivery to your hair follicles by turning upside down.
2. Relieve Stress
They can help relieve stress because they are cooling postures. It means that they can keep you present by drawing your attention inwards. If you combine your head- & handstands with long and slow breathing, they can have a positive effect on anxiety, stress, fear or other worrisome thoughts.
3. Strengthen Shoulders And Arms
Both poses require upper body strength already when you first start practicing them. When you’re in a headstand you should be pushing the edges of your forearms, wrists, and hands firmly down into the ground. This way you would keep the pressure off of your head and neck. I personally think handstands are even more challenging since you need even more strength to be able to hold it properly. If you continue to practice one or another pose regularly, you will most certainly improve upper body strength and muscular endurance. You should also check out 3 easy ways to improve your flexibility.
4. Improve Digestion
Headstands & Handstands increase body heat and digestive fire. With the help of gravity, you will help your body to move stuck material, release trapped gases, as well as improve blood flow to the all the important digestive organs. Your absorption will be increased and don’t forget – if you combine headstand & handstand with focused belly breathing you will have a double effect.
5. Increase Focus
As already mentioned turning upside down will increase the blood flow to your brains! More blood in your brains improves mental function and increases your sense of focus. It keeps your mind clear and sharp and also reduces fear and worry.
6. Strengthen Your Core
Headstand and Handstand are crazy core workouts! To be able to keep your balance throughout the post, you will have to rely on your core strength to hold your legs up. Using your core instead of kicking up into headstand, will strengthen your core and decrease the risk of injury. When you’ve got a strong core, your overall fitness will improve, making you less prone to injury.
7. Stimulate The Lymphatic System
Guess what? Flipping onto you head CAN help stimulate your lymphatic system. Gravity tends to pull fluid toward the earth, turning yourself upside down assists the drainage of lymph from your lower body. This network of nodes and fluids helps to remove waste products from your blood.
I would definitely NOT recommend this two poses if you’re a complete beginner. But I do highly recommend you slowly incorporate them into your practice with help of a yoga teacher because they are great postures with tons of benefits!
So the next time someone makes fun of you flipping onto your head, just show him this post 🙂 ALSO – if you need some yoga inspiration check out those accounts.
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