Mountain Pose With Arms Up

Last Updated: March 6, 2020

Definition - What does Mountain Pose With Arms Up mean?

Mountain pose with arms up is a simple standing yoga posture that provides the basis for more challenging standing poses. It is also one of the basic poses that form the Sun Salutation vinyasa.

With the feet together or hip width apart, the yogi extends the arms upward. Hand positions vary: The hands may be apart with the palms facing; the palms may press together; or the fingers may interlock with the index fingers pointing to the sky.

In some versions of the pose, the back and neck are arched backward with the gaze toward the sky; while in other variations, the spine remains stacked and the gaze forward.

mountain pose with arms up

Yogapedia explains Mountain Pose With Arms Up

Depending on the tradition and style of yoga, mountain pose with arms up may be considered a separate pose rather than a variation of mountain pose, known in Sanskrit as tadasana. Among the names given to mountain pose with arms up are: upward salute (urdhva hastasana); upward tree pose (urdhva vrksasana); raised hands pose (hasta uttanasana); raised arms pose; and sky reaching pose.

Although a basic posture, mountain pose with arms up provides many benefits, including:

  • Stretches the sides, shoulders and front and back body
  • Improves digestion
  • Relieves fatigue and anxiety
  • Opens the chest
  • Strengthens and tones the legs
  • Aligns the spine, thereby improving posture
  • Tones the abdominal muscles
  • Provides a sense of stability and confidence

Yogis with neck or shoulder injuries should not raise their arms, but may practice mountain pose with the arms alongside the body or with hands in prayer position.

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