In addition to its stretching benefits, eka pada sirsasana can be used to teach yogis to play to their edges, finding the balance between effort and surrender in this powerful opening posture. Since for most yogis this is a challenging posture, it is also good for building discipline by practicing regularly and with non-attachment.
Traditionally, eka pada sirsasana is associated with the anahata (heart) chakra. Working with this chakra is said to help increase feelings of love and compassion. It can also help the yogi to feel more open and connected to others.
Eka pada sirsasana is part of the intermediate series or nadi shodhana of Ashtanga yoga. It is generally built into sequences of yoga postures which encourage hip opening and forward folding in order to ready the body for this intense stretch.