Half Headstand

Definition - What does Half Headstand mean?

Half headstand is a beginner inversion pose that increases blood flow to the brain, thereby boosting mental alertness. It is a preparatory posture for both headstand and downward-facing dog. The pose resembles down dog, but the arm and head positions are different. In half headstand, the forearms rest on the floor with the fingers intertwined, and the top of the head rests on the ground between the forearms, cradled by the hands.

Half headstand is also known by its Sanskrit name, ardha sirsasana, as well as dolphin pose and half feathered peacock pose.

Yogapedia explains Half Headstand

In addition to increasing blood flow to the brain, half headstand offers a wide range of physical benefits, including:

  • Improving spinal alignment
  • Strengthening the shoulders, neck and back
  • Toning the abdominal muscles
  • Improving balance
  • Nourishing the lungs, throat, eyes and face
  • Relieving swollen legs and varicose veins
  • Reducing and relieving pain of hemorrhoids
  • Benefiting the pituitary and thyroid glands
  • Improving digestion
  • Maintaining blood-glucose levels and metabolism

Yogis suffering from any of the following should avoid half headstand: migraines, neck injuries, spinal injuries, glaucoma, high blood pressure, asthma, vertigo, obesity, and brain injuries. Pregnant or menstruating yoginis should also skip half headstand.

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