Supported Headstand

Last updated: December 21, 2023

What Does Supported Headstand Mean?

Supported headstand is a variation of the traditional headstand (sirsasana). It is an inversion that displays strength, control and beauty. Headstands are often considered the “royalty” of poses.

To enter this pose, the practitioner begins in dolphin pose (ardha pincha mayurasana). The crown of the head rests on the mat between the arms, and the knees move closer to the torso. The weight of the body is transferred from the feet to the arms and head. The legs are raised one at a time and can be fully extended if the practitioner's abdominal strength and stability allows.

Supported headstand is known as salamba sirsasana in Sanskrit.


Yogapedia Explains Supported Headstand

Supported headstand is a building block to reaching the fullest expression of the inversion: an extended headstand without the support of the hands and arms.

This supported inversion returns blood to the heart and the brain, which refreshes the cardiovascular and lymphatic systems, and has energizing effects for the whole body. This pose can relieve headaches and assist with managing asthma. The supported headstand stimulates the pituitary gland, tones the torso, offers relief to abdominal and digestive organs, and strengthens the body from the arms through the spine and legs.

Supported headstand is thought to offer mental clarity and renewed energy as well. This pose is said to help increase memory and concentration over time due to additional blood flow to the brain.

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