Inverted Lotus Pose (Urdva Padmasana)
The Story Behind the Name:
Urdva Padmasana – Inverted Lotus Pose is one of the challenging inverted postures in finishing Ashtanga Primary Series yoga where the body is balanced on the shoulders with the hands holding the legs postured in padmasana/lotus.
“Urdva Padmasana” consists of three Sanskrit words:
- “Urdva” — meaning “upward”
- “Padma” — meaning “lotus”
- “Asana” — meaning “pose” or “posture”
Urdhva Padmasana can be practiced if you have a good mastery over Salamba Sarvangasana, the shoulder stand pose and padmasana/lotus.
Urdhva Padmasana is considered as the extension of Salamba Sarvangasana.
Urdhva Padmasana strengthens the neck, shoulders, arms, and trunk muscles improving the posture.
Technical details and how to start:
- Lie flat on the floor with straight arms and legs.
- Inhale and raise your legs up so that your feet are facing the ceiling and go into shoulder stand pose.
- Support the body with both hands (just like in the shoulder stand pose).
- Once the body is balanced with hands, go into the lotus posture – bend right leg by placing the right heel on the left thigh and then placing the left heel on the right thigh. Use your hands to support the knees. Make sure that hands are straight
- Strengthens the arm, shoulder, neck and trunk muscles.
- Improves body awareness, balance and the ability to concentrate.
- Improves blood supply to the brain.
- Improving the posture.
- You must master Sarvangasana and Padmasana before you start practicing this asana.
- Have someone to observe and to help you holding the body when practice.
- Avoid this pose if you have Asthma.
- Avoid this pose if you have neck/shoulder injuries.
- Avoid this pose if you have hip/back/leg injuries.
- Avoid this pose if you are suffering with acute headache or high blood pressure.
- Avoid this pose if you are pregnant.
- If you have any medical concerns, talk with your doctor before practicing yoga.
People who decide to start practising Yoga and who are suffering from any cardiac problem, asthma, back pain, high blood pressure, neck, shoulder or spine injury or any other health related issue, should consult a doctor before starting any yogic activities and eliminate the positions that are not suitable for their particular case. Also, some particular asanas such as inversion asanas are not recommended for female practitioners who are menstruating.