Hanging around upside down is not only fun, but a great way to reduce wrinkles and promote a youthful glow. Everyone remembers hanging upside down as a child. It was a great way to pass the time and see the world from a different view. Little did your inner child know, inversions are a great health benefit and an important practice to add into your weekly exercise routine.

The Benefits

When your feet and heart are held up above your head for an extended period of time, a flow of blood rushes to the brain. This opens up blockages in your Lymphatic System and gives your brain cells a chance to soak up extra oxygen. The skin on the face is also able to receive many rejuvenating benefits from the increased blood flow. Lets not forget mention that gravity reverses wrinkles!

Read more about the benefits of Lymphatic Stimulation here: The Lymphatic System

Circulatory Warnings

Although inversions are great for some people, they are not healthy choices for all. Persons with high or low blood pressure need to approach inversions with great caution, if at all. Checking with your medical care provider is advised. The reversal of blood flow for individuals with high blood pressure can cause great harm. For people with low blood pressure, approaching head stands and inversions slowly and carefully is imperative to prevent fainting and dizzy spells.

Emotional Challenges

Inverted yoga poses for adults can seem difficult and maybe even intimidating. However, with a little pre-stretching and strengthening, there are some great ways to assist you in getting your feet up in the air.

Types of Headstands

Energizing Inversions include arm balancing poses where your head is suspended in the air. These require significant upper body and core strength in order to prevent injury. This classification of handstands are not recommended for beginners.

Relaxing Inversions are those that allow the body to ease into the position. These include yoga poses such as Legs Up On The Wall, Plow Pose, Supported Headstand and Supported Shoulder Headstand.

Preparation

In order to get ready to hang out upside down there are a few preparatory steps to take. Firstly, a strong and stable core is imperative. Secondly, improving your upper body strength will assist you in achieving your inverted goals.

Practicing Plank Position, and all variations is a quick and simple way to work on your arm and core power. If you are looking for a regular “Head Stand Preparation” routine, check out this video: 20 Minute Home Upper Body Workout Routine. Try completing this workout a few times a week to increase your inversion and head stand abilities.

Step By Step Dismount

Here are some simple steps that will help you see your world from the ground up.

STEP 1

  • Prepare your arms and legs for movement by flowing with simple Swan Dives.
  • Lengthen the spine by standing tall.
  • INHALE as you swing your hands up above your head and then EXHALE as you Swan Dive towards the ground to touch your toes or shins.
  • Repeat this series four times nice and slow with deep breaths. Stop if you feel dizzy.

STEP 2

  • Set your yourself close to and facing a wall. You will use the wall to balance with your feet during the Supported Head Stand Pose. Find yourself approximately a foot away from the wall. You can customize how far you are away from the wall whenever necessary in order to perfect your head standing pose.
  • Prepare your neck and head by releasing tension and introducing relaxed movements.
  • Begin with Childs Pose INHALE as you grab your heels.
  • Tuck your chin to your chest as you slowly raise your hips into the air.
  • Flow into Beginners Rabbit Pose.
  • Keep the top of your head gently touching the ground. Feel the stretch from the tailbone to the back of the head.
  • Hold for 5 to 10 breaths then flow back to childs pose.
  • Relax and repeat.

STEP 3

  • From Rabbit Pose let go of your heels and bring your hands around to interlock fingers behind the back of your head.
  • Curl your toes under and begin to lift your knees off the floor to find yourself in a modified Dolphin Pose.
  • Use your upper arms to push against the floor release the back of your neck and lower spine.
  • Only 10% or less body weight should be applied to your head in this pose.
  • Practice using your upper body strength to float your head a few inches from the ground.
  • Repeat to develop more upper body strength and stability.

Feel free to release the pose at any time. Find relaxation with a simple childs pose.

STEP 4

  • From modified Dolphin Pose use your upper body strength as you bend your knees slightly, then quickly jump both legs and feet up towards the wall. It helps to choose a lead foot which will touch the wall first.
  • Take rest at anytime.
  • This movement requires regular practice and patience.

STEP 5

  • When you are successfully balancing on the wall with your feet try to lengthen the spine and use your upper arms to reduce the pressure on the top of your head.
  • Try to use your upper body strength to lift the top of your head a few inches off the ground.
  • This is a great practice to help advance in your inverted poses.
  • You can also attempt to balance without the assistance of the wall.

STEP 6

  • When you are ready, slowly release the pose and gradually let your feet touch the ground. This slow and controlled movement will help build your core muscles and improve your balance.
  • Once you are back on the ground it is important to release your lower back and neck by practicing Childs Pose and Rabbits Pose once more.
  • Repeat Step 2 and Step 1 of this instruction to slowly unwind from your inverted journey.

At anytime you feel weak or pain STOP and relax. Practicing inverted poses is meant to make you feel Youthful. The last thing you want to feel after practicing yoga is weak, tired and old.

And whatever you do, make sure not to eat a big meal, if at all, before you jump into a headstand. As whatever goes up may go down and out.

If you enjoyed this simple head stand instruction you can start practicing more advanced inversion poses like Crow Pose and Hand Stand Pose.

Happy Head-Standing All!

Kaeli Yarwood

Kaeli has always had an infatuation with keeping fit and improving life. Whether it is strength training, endurance building, or self-study research, she has devoted endless hours to them all. Her interest in health started at an early age. From swim competitions to long distance running, she discovered that keeping fit is an integral part of her life. After being diagnosed with... Read More

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