How to do Halasana or Plow Pose and What are its Benefits?
Halasana is also known as the Plough Pose or Plow Pose because it resembles a wooden plow that is traditionally used in fields to till the soil. Hala” is also known as the plow or plough and so the name Halasana. This is one highly essential yoga asana or yoga move which helps in eradicating the back pain caused due to various reasons. In fact Halasana is one of the most effective asanas which involves stretching of each part of the spine, especially the upper spine. In this current article we will talk about the health benefits of halasana. This article will also let you know how to do the Halasana in a step by step manner.
How To Do Halasana or Plow Pose Exercise?
Now here we are at the exact section where we would be mentioning about the steps of doing halasana or the plough pose in a clear manner. But before we make you know about the steps let us tell you that the preparatory poses including the Sarvangasana, Ashwini Mudra and the Viparit Karni can be done before the start of halasana.
Now check out the steps for doing Halasana or the Plow pose.
- Lie down flat on your back with the arms alongside the body and the palms facing down
- Do keep both the legs straight and close together all throughout the practise of the basic pose of halasana.
- Make sure you have relaxed the whole body and prepared your mind for the plough pose.
- Now, slowly raise both your legs to a vertical position. Try to make use of the abdominal muscles more than the arms while raising the legs.
- Here, you can use your hands to support behind the back and helps you aid in raising the legs further up.
- Exhale now and continue raising your legs over the head, bending at the waist, lifting the back and the buttocks.
- Try with all efforts to get your feet all the way down until the toes touch the ground directly behind the head.
- Make sure you are keeping both the feet together while at this pose.
- Comfortably place the palms facing down in the ground and slowly prepare to come out of the pose
- First lower your back to the floor and then slowly return back to the normal position releasing all the vertebrae and the tailbone along with your legs down in the ground.
- At the end of the halasana, rest in savasana and take complete relaxing breaths for few minutes.
There are some follow-up poses to be done after halasana. Vistrut pada halasana, Karnapeedanasana and the matsyasana are the three yoga asanas which must be done after doing halasana.
Precautions For Doing Halasana (Plough Pose):
“Safety means first aid to the uninjured”. There are some safe precautions to be maintained before doing halasana or plow pose so as to prevent from any harmful effects. Check out some of the most important precautions before doing the halasana or the plow pose.
- Make sure you are keeping your legs straight in knees with the toes vertical on the ground over your head.
- Be sure your both the legs are in one straight line
- Try to keep the back straight and vertical as far as possible.
- Do note to keep arms straight with your palms on the ground.
- Also look to rest the shoulders on the ground
- You see the chin is resting against the chest.
- Do not do Halasana or Plow Pose exercise during pregnancy or during menstruation
- Patients with high blood pressure and brain diseases must avoid doing Halasana or Plow Pose exercise
- In case you have an enlarged liver, thyroid or spleen, you must avoid doing halasana or the plow pose.
- Stop doing Halasana or Plow Pose exercise in case of headache and weak blood vessels in the eyes.
- If you suffer from cervical spondylitis or slipped disc, avoid doing Halasana or Plow Pose exercise.
- Do not bend the knees
- Make sure not to move or overstrain your neck.
- Do not be in hurry to move fast while doing the asana, as it can put tremendous amount of stress onto the spine.
Variations Of Halasana Or The Plow Pose:
There are some variations which can be added to the halasana or the plow pose. Let us check some of them below.
Variation 1 of Halasana or Plow Pose:
This is a simple extension of the sarvangasana or the shoulder stand, where from the final position of the asana you begin to lower your legs overhead and follow all the similar guidelines as mentioned for the halasana practise.
Variation 2 of Halasana or Plow Pose:
In this you are to pull your toes near your head with the help of your hands at the final position of halasana. This variation helps in stretching the lower back.
Variation 3 of Halasana or Plow Pose:
This variation involves pulling your heels towards you and pushing the toes away from you at the final position of halasana or the plough pose. This kind of variation in halasana helps in stretching the back and neck effectively.
This variation is also known as “Karnapidasana”, meaning “Squeezing the ears” pose. At the final position of halasana you need to bend both your knees and get closer to touch the ground and closer towards the ears.
Here in this variation, hold both the big toes with your hands and begin to spread the feet apart as much as possible in a comfortable manner. Hold this position for at least 30 seconds and then get back your feet together.
This is also known as Dynamic halasana and it is an asana made from combining two yoga poses, i.e. the forward bending pose of the Pashhimottanasana and the halasana in a dynamic movement which is synchronized with proper breathing.
Here you need to start with the forward bending pose where in the seating position, you are to stretch your legs straight out in front. Here while exhaling you are to bend forward and go as far as you are comfortable. Next while you roll back down to the floor, you bring the legs overhead into halasana position quite dynamically. Similarly again repeat the exhalation by rolling back into the forward bending pose or the paschimottanasana. This is what you need to continue for about 8 breaths.
Benefits of Halasana or Plow Pose:
“Friends with benefit is not a good act; act with benefits is a good friend!” Halasana is one yoga act which provides you some wonderful benefits. So now we come to the section listing the various benefits of halasana or the plow pose. Here we will know about various benefits from the halasana. We will study the benefits under few sub-headings as mentioned below.
General Benefits of Halasana:
- Halasana or the plow pose has some real great benefits to humans. Let us study them below,
- Helps in eradicating the rigidity of the back muscles
- Halasana or Plow Pose exercise helps in improving the muscle tone and the strength of the back muscles and the abdominal and the leg muscles too.
- It aids in enhancing the function of spine by stretching the spinal nerves.
- Halasana or Plow Pose exercise also helps in improving the function of thyroid, parathyroid and the pituitary glands
- This yoga asana provides great stretch to the spine and thus it helps in improving the overall elasticity and the function of the body
- Halasana or Plow Pose exercise aids greatly in improving the endocrine system and in turns aids in improving the entire bodily functions.
- It stimulates the immune system effectively
- The type of breathing movements in diaphragm involved while doing Halasana, assist in massaging the abdominal muscles.
- Halasana helps in enhancing the digestive system of the body
- It is greatly beneficial to women health as it benefits the pelvic area.
Therapeutic Benefits of Halasana or Plow Pose:
Here let us talk about the health conditions which can be treated or reduced with regular halasana.
- The finest therapeutic benefits of halasana is its benefits in reducing back pains and various back issues incluing Lumbago, strained lumbar etc.
- Halasana has its therapeutic effects in treating fatigue, headache, insomnia etc
- It also helps in treating infertility.
- Halasana or the plough pose is also known for treating cough, cold and asthma.
- It helps in reducing the stress level and attaining peace.
Now that you are aware of the plough pose or the halasana and its various benefits, it must be an obvious feel in you now to start practising this extremely beneficial yoga asana. So, why not reach an expert yoga trainer and start with your very own asana right away!
“Do not just seek health; seek flexibility. Start halasana and live flexibly.”