Tips, Photos and Videos for Beginners
Plow pose, known as halasana in Sanskrit, is an inversion posture that stretches the hamstring, neck, and shoulder muscles. It is most often prescribed as a counterpose for shoulder stand (sarvangasana), but the pose is much more than that. Besides stretching through the back of the body, plow pose also stimulates circulation for a beneficial effect on the organs of the digestive system.
Plow pose stretches the entire back of the body – all the way from heel to neck – for supple, injury-free muscles. Inversions can be difficult, mentally, since they involve reversing our normal relationship with gravity. Overcoming fear in plow pose can lead to self-growth and improved mental, as well as physical, flexibility.
Breathing through plow pose massages the abdominal organs, stimulating digestion and relieving constipation. According to the yogi Swami Satyananda Saraswati, plow pose benefits a long list of digestive system organs including the pancreas, the liver, the kidneys, and the thyroid, as well as other abdominal organs like the spleen and the suprarenal gland.
Do not attempt plow pose if you:
- are on your period.
- have a neck injury.
- have high blood pressure.
- have glaucoma.
- have a hernia.
- have a slipped disk.
- have sciatica.