Inversions are used loads in yoga, any time your head goes below the level of your heart, technically that’s an inversion…. yes even downward dog!
So what are the benefits?
- Strengthens the whole body
- Improves balance
- Helps drain the lymphatic system
- Can help with circulation
- Creates a sense of calm in mind and body
- Boosts confidence
- Emphasises an internal focus
- Keeps the ego in check
- It’s anti-aging!!!
- Some say it boosts creativity
- Takes pressure off the joints
- Can help with sciatica
- Realigns the spine
- Can help with sleep problems
Full inversions e.g headstand, shoulder stand etc. Are not necessarily suitable for everyone and are contraindicated for those with:
- High blood pressure
- Neck injury
- Any injury which makes the foundation of the pose unstable e.g if you had a wrist injury it would be a bad idea to try a handstand!
- Menstruation – turning the body upside down disrupts the downward energy
So what can you do instead? To get the benefits of inversions without turning fully upside down go for a legs up the wall version. Lying on your back scoot into the wall so your bum rests against it. Place the legs straight up the wall and flex the feet. Alternatively you can place a block or a bolster under the hips. Lying down and raise the legs up, feet flexed.
Keep practicing and most of all have fun!