Asana for Exploration 12: Viparita Karani (Leg's Up The Wall Pose)

So this is one of those poses that can really surprise you. Often times, I see clients eyes open wide as soon as they set up the shape, something unexpected happens the first time you try this asana.

But first, when is a good time to strike this pose? Sounds of Madonna singing "Vogue" are shouting at me at the moment, go ahead, click the link, get in the mood...

Back to the mat, this posture is great after a long exhausting day, after a long exhausting run or when you simply need to be on your mat and let go. Know your intention when setting up your props, maybe silence your phone and/or set a timer for at least 10 mins to find stillness.

If you are planning on playing with props, have them near by and build the pose as you feel you need to. It really is a process, but will reward itself, that is a promise!

Find fetal pose as close to the wall as possible, scoot your hips to the base of the wall and roll over to your back. You may need to wiggle your way closer to the wall before extending the legs up higher.

Play with the positioning of your hands and arms, perhaps they are by your hips or out longs like the letter "Y", or a more active release for the psoas might be reaching the arms up over head and long.

Only you can decide what you want to put into it and you will get what you need out of it. So go ahead and explore.

There are many benefits associated with this pose, here is some more insight:

  A little time invested with the props brings big payback:    -If using the belt, be sure it is around hips, not your low back, find the right tension where you feel the strap assisting with the tensegrity of legs.    -I really like a block between the feet to help align my beautifully dysfunctional left foot. and it brings a little more width to support the weight of a sandbag on top.  This is like the icing on the cake, sometimes second helpings are called for and another sandbag is added.    -The neck roll helps to relax the neck and shoulders, tension here sneaks it's way in during the day and you will feel this melt away.    -Other props ideas would be to wrap the belt around the outside of the ankle or hips; also a blanket or bolster under the hips to promote further elevation may further promote release for you    With time, these props can be set up on your own, but can initially be frustrating. Ask for help!

A little time invested with the props brings big payback:

-If using the belt, be sure it is around hips, not your low back, find the right tension where you feel the strap assisting with the tensegrity of legs.

-I really like a block between the feet to help align my beautifully dysfunctional left foot. and it brings a little more width to support the weight of a sandbag on top.  This is like the icing on the cake, sometimes second helpings are called for and another sandbag is added.

-The neck roll helps to relax the neck and shoulders, tension here sneaks it's way in during the day and you will feel this melt away.

-Other props ideas would be to wrap the belt around the outside of the ankle or hips; also a blanket or bolster under the hips to promote further elevation may further promote release for you

With time, these props can be set up on your own, but can initially be frustrating. Ask for help!


Please Note: If this or any yoga pose caused direct pain, numbness or just does not feel right to you, please stop. Your yoga practice should never hurt, seek advice from a qualified instructor or a medical practitioner.