How Tree Pose Changed My Life (Vrksasana)
The lessons I have learnt through yoga and the journey it is taking me on are undeniably the most magnificent journey ever. It has had it’s fair share of ups and downs, digging deep in to my soul, peeling back the layers, and searching for answers – answers that I have only just realised have always been within, and one yoga asana has taught me the most, it has changed my life. Tree pose – Vrkasana.
I met a wonderful yoga teacher in 2015 for a few 1-2-1 yoga classes. At a time when I felt I needed something more, she led me through a beautiful hatha yoga practice. We came to the tree pose, and I was wobbling all over the place, finding it hard to focus, putting pressure on myself, feeling frustrated etc, which in turn made my balance worse. Then, she said something that changed my life forever – I will never forget that moment.
“If you fall, just pick yourself right back up and try again.”
Simple words, but life changing ones.
We all have days when we balance, we have days when we fall, we have days of sadness, we have days of joy, but whenever we fall, we pick ourselves up and we try again – growing stronger and stronger, accepting what is, and letting go, not judging ourselves, not criticizing ourselves. When the wind blows we may fall, when a storm hits we can fall, and when we do – trusting and knowing that we can stand back up proud – we can ground ourselves like a tree and grow stronger and stronger everyday.
Step-by-step instructions on how to do the Tree Pose, Vrksasana:
- Stand straight with your arms by the side of your body.
- Press the left foot firmly on the mat. Make sure the left leg is straight. Find your balance carefully.
- Now bend your right knee and place the right foot high up on the inside of your left thigh. Ensure that the sole of your foot is placed flat and firmly on the thigh.
- Now once you are well-balanced, as you inhale, slowly raise your arms up above your head from the side. Bring the palms together in Namaste Mudra .
- Be slow, gentle and graceful in your movement. Keep a soft smile on your face.
- Gaze ahead at a point directly in front of you. This will help maintain a steady stance.
- Throughout the posture, make sure your spine and the leg that is on the mat is straight (the left leg in this case). Take slow, deep breaths in and out. With every exhalation, feel your body relaxing and your left foot sinking deeper into the mat.
- Now, as you slowly exhale, bring your hands down from the sides and gently bring the right leg down.
- Now repeat the same with your right leg on the mat and left leg placed on the right inner thigh.
Benefits of Tree Pose, Vrksasana
The benefits of Tree Pose are both mental and physical. From improving physical balance, to mental and emotional balance, this posture restores equilibrium. It is beneficial in improving focus, concentration and stability. It stretches and strengthens the legs, back and arms, while opening up the hips. It provides relief from sciatica as well. Performed with grace and in a gentle way, the Tree Pose is invigorating and rejuvenating. However, the Tree Pose should be avoided if you are suffering from a migraine, insomnia and blood pressure issues.
Being a beginner-level posture, the Tree Pose is usually covered in most 200-hour yoga teacher training courses (YTTC), like the Sampoorna Yoga 200-hour YTTC. The yoga teacher training course is well-planned and guides students through a holistic yoga experience that consists of yoga asanas, pranayama, cleansing techniques, meditation, philosophy and more. If you can take out the time from your daily responsibilities to do a course at Sampoorna Yoga, Goa, I promise you it will be life-changing.